VATICAN CITY -- One thousand people were suspected to be dead or missing in the town of Duekoue, Ivory Coast, after clashes throughout the country intensified, Caritas Internationalis reported.
Aid organizations have been recovering hundreds of bodies in Duekoue, according to news reports.
Caritas workers visiting the town "are reporting a thousand people have been killed there or 'disappeared,'" Caritas Internationalis, the Catholic Church's aid and development agency, said in an April 2 statement.
"Caritas condemns all attacks on civilians and says the humanitarian situation in Ivory Coast is rapidly deteriorating," it said.
Army forces and militia supporting President-elect Alassane Ouattara have been clashing with security personnel and others loyal to outgoing President Laurent Gbagbo, who refused to leave office after Ouattara was declared the winner of elections Nov. 28.
Some 1 million people have fled the violence, according to the United Nations. Many have escaped the violence by taking refuge in Liberia.