London, Jan 1 : At least 60 people, including children aged between eight and 15, died in a stampede on New Year's eve in Abidjan city in west Africa's Cote d'Ivoire, media reports said Tuesday.

The stampede occurred while large crowds of people gathered in the central district of Plateau to watch a fireworks show held at the 65,000-capacity Felix Houphouet Boigny stadium, BBC reported.

More than 200 people were injured in the incident.

BBC said the incident occurred in the early hours of Tuesday near the entrance to the stadium after the fireworks ended around 2 a.m.

The cause of the stampede was not yet clear. It occurred as people were heading home after the event.

One report said thousands of people were trying to leave the stadium at the same time as another large crowd was trying to get in.

"In the crush, people were walked over and suffocated by the crowd," BBC quoted Lt. Col. Issa Sako, head of the military rescue effort, as saying.

The site was seen littered with abandoned clothes and blood stains.

"I have just seen all those bodies, but I can't find my son," said the mother of a nine-year-old boy.

The stadium is named after the founding president of Ivory Coast.


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