EU bans Ivory Coast president as poll unrest grows More than 50 people killed since elections according to the UN, who have been told to leave the country A supporter of President Laurent Gbagbo sings during a youth rally in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. Photograph: Sunday Alamba/AP The EU today agreed a travel ban on Ivory Coast's president, Laurent Gbagbo, whose supporters have vowed to fight to the death to keep him in power. The announcement came as the UN accused armed men of threatening its staff in their homes, and expressed concern at unconfirmed reports of a mass grave in the tense west African nation. The UN says more than 50 people have been killed since opposition leader Alassane Ouattara's election victory over Gbagbo was recognised by the UN, the US, the African Union and the country's former colonial power, France but not Gbagbo. The EU travel ban will be imposed on Gbagbo, his wife Simone and 17 of his close allies, expected to include top security, ruling party and regular army officials. Maja Kocijancic, a spokeswoman for the European Commission in Brussels, said: "We expect the ban to be adopted by Wednesday and come into effect on Thursday, effective immediately." Governments were also discussing a freeze on assets, she added. Gbagbo's supporters brushed off the measures as insignificant, noting that Gbagbo rarely travels. His aide, Pascal Affi N'Guessan, said: "I don't think this will advance things. It just shows that those behind them haven't got much room for manoeuvre." About 5,000 Ivorians have already fled to neighbouring countries as concerns grow that an election designed to draw a line under the 2002-2003 civil war will instead reignite conflict between north and south. The UN security council today called on all parties to recognise Ouattara as president and extended the mandate of its peacekeeping force for six months, defying calls from Gbagbo's government for it to quit the country. The UN has nearly 10,000 troops in Ivory Coast, and France more than 900. About 800 UN peacekeepers are protecting the luxury hotel from which Ouattara is trying to govern the country. They are in turn encircled by troops loyal to Gbagbo, who has been accused of recruiting Liberian and Angolan mercenaries. The top UN official in the country today condemned intimidation tactics against his personnel. Choi Young-jin, the UN special representative in Abidjan, said: "Armed men have been coming to the personal houses of United Nations employees, asking them to leave and searching their houses under the pretext of looking for arms." Ouattara has won almost unanimous international backing after his victory in the 28 November presidential poll was overturned on grounds of alleged fraud by the country's constitutional council, led by a staunch Gbagbo ally, which erased nearly half a million votes in Ouattara strongholds. But the UN was today accused of trying to orchestrate a coup by Charles Blé Goudé, who was named this month as Gbagbo's youth minister. "The UN is giving weapons to the rebels in Côte D'Ivoire to attack the government and overthrow Mr Gbagbo from power," he told al-Jazeera television. "The mission of the UN is a peace mission. Since they are now among our opponents, they have failed in their mission." Goudé added: "We are using legal means to show the outside world the majority of the Ivorian people are supporting president Gbagbo. What the western media are saying is not true. Mr Gbagbo is the winner and we are going to show it in the street." Yesterday Goudé, who has been on a UN sanctions list since 2006 for making public statements advocating violence, told a pro-Gbagbo youth rally: "This battle that we began in 2002 - we are ready to die for it." Gbagbo retains control of the army and the key institutions, including the state broadcaster, and lucrative revenues from oil and cocoa. A spokesman for Ouattara's rival government, said: "The UN does not recognise his authority. There is one president, Ouattara, and he sent a letter to Ban Ki-moon asking him to maintain forces here until the peace process is over." An attempt by Ouattara supporters last week to seize the state TV building ended in bloodshed as pro-Gbagbo forces used live rounds to put down the protest. Gbagbo's government has denied using excessive force and claimed some protesters were armed. The UN said yesterday it had received hundreds of reports of people being abducted from their homes at night by armed assailants in military uniform. Navi Pillay, UN high commissioner for human rights, cited evidence of "massive" violations in Ivory Coast, saying more than 50 people had been killed in the previous three days and raising concern over reports of deaths in detention. Outside the UN headquarters, Ouattara supporters who said they were attacked overnight begged for medical care. "Masked men attacked us last night," said Salif Kone, 57, a taxi driver who escaped a raid on his Abidjan neighbourhood. "They fired tear gas and bullets. Many were wounded." Staff of at least one hospital have received orders to refuse injured opposition supporters. Eyewitnesses say former fighters from neighboring Liberia are operating alongside the police.