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Foreigners Leaving Ivory Coast Despite Government Assurances

Foreigners continue to stream out of the West African nation of Ivory Coast, despite promises from the president to protect them after a surge of anti-Western violence.

Already, thousands of French, British, U.S. and other foreign nationals have been evacuated.

The United States said Saturday it has sent more than a dozen military officials to Ivory Coast to prepare for the possibility of mandatory evacuations. So far, evacuations have been voluntary.

On Friday, President Laurent Gbagbo said the government is taking steps to ensure the safety of foreigners.

Supporters of the president went on a rampage nearly a week ago targeting French nationals, after France wiped out the country's tiny air force. The attack was in retaliation for the bombing of a French army base that killed nine French soldiers and an American citizen.