Former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo and political leader Charles Ble Goude were released on bail to Belgium Tuesday after being acquitted last month on charges of crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court in The Hague.
In 2010 Gbagbo lost the presidency and was accused of starting a civil war by refusing to cede the presidency after an election. The civil war resulted in 3,000 deaths and the displacement of a million people.
Prosecutors failed to prove the alleged plan of keeping Gbagbo in power and him knowingly or intentionally contributing to attacking the civilian population or his speech constituted inducing such crimes. Prosecutors appealed the decision and requested that Gbagbo and Ble Goude not be released while the case was on appeal for fear that they would not return to court.
The court imposed several conditions on the men’s release, including: abiding by all instructions and orders of court, providing address and contact information, not traveling beyond the territorial limits of the municipality without the court’s permission, surrendering documents like passports, reporting weekly to law enforcement, not contacting witnesses of case, not talking to the press concerning the case and “[abiding] by any additional reasonable conditions imposed by the State of release.”