At least six people have been killed in western Ivory Coast after an attack by unidentified armed men.

Officials say the gunmen stormed the village of Zilebly early Wednesday, sparking clashes with security forces.  Two soldiers were among the dead.

The town is located just kilometers from the border with Liberia.  The fighting prompted residents to flee the area for safety.

United Nations deputy spokesman Eduardo del Buey condemned the attack and said peacekeepers in the area have been put on high alert and are mobilized in support of Ivorian security forces.   

"The mission reaffirms its determination to assist the government of Côte d'Ivoire in its efforts to consolidate the country’s return to peace," said del Buey.

Western Ivory Coast was the scene of some of the worst bloodshed during the country's post-election crisis in 2010 and 2011, which left an estimated 3,000 people dead.

The region is often targeted by armed groups loyal to former president Laurent Gbagbo that operate out of Liberia.  The militias are accused of carrying out attacks on villages and troops stationed in the area.