The ICC confirms Gbagbo will be on trial
Three years after his arrest in Abidjan, the former president of Ivory Coast received confirmation, on 12 June, that he will be tried by the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.
The judges found that there were “substantial grounds to believe” that Laurent Gbagbo, 69, can be held responsible for crimes against humanity perpetrated after the 2010 presidential elections, in the capital city, during four dramatic events: a march on the public television headquarters, a womens’ demonstration, a mortar shelling in a popular area (Abobo) and serious violations committed in another area (Yopougon).
Last year, ICC judges rejected the prosecution case against Gbagbo, pointing out the weakness of the evidence. To support her new case, Fatou Bensouda’s team brought 22,000 pages of evidence and heard 108 witnesses. They stressed in particular the existence of a “common plan” by the Gbagbo clan to stay in power, with the help of a “parallel structure” directed by Laurent Gbagbo, his wife and politician Charles Blé Goudé. Among the three, only Simone Gbagbo remains in Ivory Coast, which opposed her transfer to the ICC.