AFRICA/IVORY COAST - Bishops "we are shocked": assault in Grand Bassam

Friday, 18 March 2016 terrorism   bishops  

Abidjan (Agenzia Fides) - The number of victims caused by the terrorist attack in Grand-Bassam, the resort town on the Ivory Coast, on Sunday, March 13 attacked by a commando of Al Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb has risen to 19 (AQMI, see Fides 14/03/2016).
According to authorities, the victims are 11 Ivorians (including 3 members of the special forces), a Nigerian, four French, one German, one Macedonian and one Lebanese. Economy Minister and government spokesman, Bruno Koné, said that the victims are "Muslims and Christians, wealthy individuals and ordinary citizens who were trying to make a living on the beach".
The Bishops of the Ivory Coast said they were "shocked by this new manifestation of deadly violence". In a statement signed by His Exc. Mgr. Alexis Touabli Youlo, Bishop of Agboville and President of the local Bishops' Conference, "they invite all our compatriots to serenity and peaceful coexistence".
The Bishops thank "the volunteers who have mobilized to help their brothers and sisters" and praise "the prompt reaction of the special security forces, rescue services, as well as the presence of the Head of State, Alassane Ouattara, and members of the government"
They conclude by expressing closeness to the victims' families and the injured, ensuring their prayer for peace in the Country. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 18/03/2016)