Ivorian ex-first lady Gbagbo still wanted in The Hague

03 June 2015 by Stephanie van den Berg, The Hague (The Netherlands)

The custody battle between Ivory Coast and the International Criminal Court over Simone Gbagbo continues as the ICC upheld its ruling for the Ivorian ex-first lady to be tried internationally despite national proceedings that already slapped her with a two-decade jail sentence.

International Criminal Court in The Hague (Photo: Flickr/josefstuefer).jpg
Image caption: 
International Criminal Court in The Hague (Photo: Flickr/josefstuefer).jpg

In May, Abidjan sentenced Mrs. Gbagbo to 20 years in prison for “undermining state security” in the violence that followed her country’s contested 2010 elections [IJT-178]. Last week the ICC rejected Ivory Coast’s attempts to dismiss the ICC case, and judges urged Abidjan to hand over Mrs. Gbagbo “without delay”. Her husband, former president Laurent Gbagbo, is already awaiting trial at the ICC.

However, Ivorian authorities have said they will not send anyone else to The Hague. Following rejection of their appeal, they announced they would retry the ex-first lady, this time for crimes against humanity. The main complaint of the ICC appeals chamber was that the local charges did not cover the same conduct as alleged in the ICC charges of crimes against humanity including murder, rape, persecution and other inhumane acts.

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