updated 9/7/2006 5:26:23 AM ET 2006-09-07T09:26:23

Ivory Coast's entire 32-member Cabinet resigned, state radio said Wednesday, amid growing anger over a wave of toxic fumes blamed for the deaths of three children.

The ministers offered their resignations and President Laurent Gbagbo accepted after the children's deaths were attributed to residue from a gasoline shipment apparently dumped near residential areas in Abidjan, Ivory Coast's largest city and commercial hub, state radio reported.

A new 32-member Cabinet was expected to be formed. The national-unity Cabinet includes top rebel leaders from Ivory Coast's 2002-2003 civil war, Gbagbo loyalists and opposition politicians.

Abidjan residents began complaining of an offensive stench in recent weeks and Trafigura Beheer B.V., a Dutch-based commodities company, said a local contractor may have improperly disposed of a byproduct from a fuel shipment sent to the West African nation.

Among the chemicals in the residue was hydrogen sulfide, which in concentrated doses can kill humans but when diffused gives off the odor of matches or rotten eggs, according to an Ivorian government health report.

Hundreds of residents took to the streets Tuesday to complain about the stench, turning away vehicles and waving placards asking the government to act to clean up the area.

Many people have gone to hospitals with complaints ranging from eye irritation to nausea, health officials said.

State radio said a French clean-up team was expected to arrive soon to help deal with the crisis.

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