I. Coast gang attack kills six: UN

An armed gang attacked a village in strife-prone western Ivory Coast on Saturday, leaving at least six people dead, including three of the attackers, the UN mission in the country said.

The United Nations said it was stepping up air and land patrols of the region after the attack, the second deadly assault there this month.

The spokeswoman for the UN mission, Sylvie van den Wildenberg, said two civilians and a traditional hunter were killed in the assault on the village of Petit-Guiglo and that the Ivorian army had killed three of the attackers.

Racked for years by tensions caused largely by land disputes, western Ivory Coast was the most violent region during the country's post-election crisis in 2010-2011, which claimed about 3,000 lives.

After the crisis -- triggered by the refusal of former president Laurent Gbagbo to admit an election defeat to Alassane Ouattara -- the region was targeted by armed groups based in eastern Liberia.

Ouattara's government has accused armed exiles loyal to Gbagbo of carrying out the attacks, but the former leader's supporters deny any involvement.

Gbagbo himself is now behind bars at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, facing charges of crimes against humanity.