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Footballer accused of trying to smuggle woman

Gervinho has been accused of trying to smuggle someone into Italy. Credit: PA

Former Arsenal forward Gervinho has been accused of trying to smuggle a woman onto a flight from the Ivory Coast to Rome.

Gervinho was leaving the Ivorian capital of Abidjan last week on a private jet laid on by his club, Roma, after helping Ivory Coat qualify for next year's Africa Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea.

According to French publication imatin, he managed to bribe several airport officials before being rumbled by the pilot, who refused to depart with the woman on board.

Gervinho's agent Pascal Boisseau was unavailable for comment.

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UK Govt sends 'sincere condolences' to Ivorian people

Foreign Office minister Hugo Swire has expressed his shock at the stampede in Ivory Coast which left at least 61 people dead:

I am shocked and deeply saddened at the tragic loss of life.

During what should have been a happy and joyous celebration of the New Year, many families are now mourning their loved ones.

The UK Government sends its sincere condolences to all the Ivorian people at this time.

– hugo swire, foreign office minister

Ivory Coast president: 'This is a national tragedy'

Ivory Coast president Alassane Ouattara, has visited injured people in hospital following a fatal stampede, which is estimated to have claim at least 60 lives.

Ouattara called the incident a national tragedy and said an investigation was underway to determine what happened.

One of the injured, speaking to the news agency Reuters, said security forces had arrived to break up the crowd, triggering a panic in which many people fell over and were trampled.

Aftermath of Ivory Coast crush which killed dozens

Rescue and security forces remain at the scene today after a stampede at a fireworks display in the Ivory Coast claimed an estimated 60 lives overnight, reports Reuters.

A further 200 people are understood to have been injured in the crush which happened as New Year celebrations were held near the Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium in Abidjan.

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Children among victims of Ivory Coast stampede

About 60 people were crushed to death in Ivory Coast's main city of Abidjan overnight after a New Year's Eve fireworks display, an emergency official and state radio said on Tuesday. He said the incident happened near Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium where a crowd had gathered to watch fireworks.

The emergency services arrive at the scene in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. Credit: RT1

A Reuters correspondent said there were blood stains and abandoned shoes outside the stadium on Tuesday morning, and government officials and rescue and security forces were still there. Many of the victims are understood to be children.

"My two children came here yesterday. I told them not to come but they didn't listen. They came when I was sleeping. What will I do?" said Assetou Toure, a cleaner. She said she did not know if her children had survived.

Dozens killed in Ivory Coast stampede at fireworks display

About 60 people were crushed to death in Ivory Coast's main city of Abidjan overnight after a New Year's Eve fireworks display, an emergency official and state radio said on Tuesday.

"There are around 60 dead, and about 200 injured, this is a provisional estimate," a rescue official told Reuters. He said the incident happened near a stadium where a crowd had gathered to watch fireworks.