In Summary
  • Gbagbo and his deputy Charles Ble Goude were both cleared of crimes against humanity in January.
  • Bensouda said there had been "incorrect and unreasonable assessment," including in relation to December 2010 rapes.
  • Ivory Coast's former prime minister Pascal Affi N'Guessan, who heads Gbagbo's Ivorian Popular Front party, condemned the appeal.

The Hague

The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Fatou Bensouda on Monday appealed against the shock acquittal of former Ivory Coast leader Laurent Gbagbo over post-electoral violence that killed around 3,000 people.

Gbagbo, the first head of state to stand trial in The Hague, and his deputy Charles Ble Goude, were both cleared of crimes against humanity in January and released the following month.

"The appeal will demonstrate that the trial chamber committed legal and procedural errors which led to the acquittals of Mr Gbagbo and Mr Ble Goude on all counts," Prosecutor Bensouda's office said.

STANDARD OF PROOF

Judges had cleared the pair "without properly articulating and consistently applying a clearly defined standard of proof," said Bensouda.

Bensouda said there had been "incorrect and unreasonable assessment," including in relation to December 2010 rapes.

She stated those "errors" had made a material difference in the decision to acquit the accused based on a "partially informed decision" prior to a full written assessment of all findings.

The appeal will go before an appeals chamber of five judges.

APPEAL CONDEMNED

Ivory Coast's former prime minister Pascal Affi N'Guessan, who heads Gbagbo's Ivorian Popular Front party, condemned the appeal, which comes just months before the country faces a presidential election.

"These are judicial delaying tactics and political doggedness to keep Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Ble Goude as far away from the country as possible to prevent them from participating in Ivory Coast's political life," he told AFP.

Page 1 of 2