Ivory Coast charges two more ex-president allies with genocide

Ivory Coast charges two more ex-president allies with genocide

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[JURIST] The Ivory Coast [BBC News backgrounder; JURIST news archive] justice ministry announced Tuesday that two allies of former president Laurent Gbagbo [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] have been charged with genocide relating to the months of post-election violence that followed Gbagbo’s refusal to step down after his defeat in the November 2010 elections. Genevieve Bro-Grebe, leader of the pro-Gbagbo Women Patriots, and Abou Drahamane Sangare, former vice president of the Ivorian Popular Front (FPI), were reportedly named in two new indictments [AFP report] charging genocide and crimes against the civilian population. The new charges mean a total of eight Gbagbo loyalists now face “genocide” accusations [AP report], including former first lady Simone Gbagbo, ex-FPI head Pascal Affi N’Guessan and former prime minister Gilbert Ake N’Gbo. Gbagbo’s rival President Alassane Ouattara [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] was declared the winner of the 2010 election and is now president. The violence that followed the election claimed approximately 3,000 lives.

Gbagbo was forced out and captured [JURIST report] last April. In November he was surrendered [JURIST report] to the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] by the national authorities of the Ivory Coast and brought to the Netherlands in response to an ICC arrest warrant [text, PDF] charging Gbagbo with four counts including murder, persecution, inhumane acts, and rape and other forms of sexual violence allegedly committed during the post-election violence. Last month the ICC postponed Gbagbo’s confirmation of charges hearing after his lawyers asked the court more time to prepare [JURIST reports]. Gbagbo’s lawyers complained that they did not have enough resources to build their case in the amount of time given. Gbagbo’s original hearing date was set [JURIST report] in December during his pre-trial hearing in the Pre-Trial Chamber III of the ICC.