ICC Prosecutor Asks for Ivory Coast War Crimes Investigation

Posted June 23rd, 2011 at 11:50 am (UTC-5)
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The top prosecutor at the International Criminal Court has asked for the court's authorization to investigate possible war crimes in Ivory Coast.

Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo on Thursday asked judges at The Hague to approve a probe of post-election violence in the West African nation.

Moreno-Ocampo says at least 3,000 people were killed in the five-month power struggle following last November's vote.

He also says more than 500 people were arbitrarily detained and at least 100 rapes have been reported, although the actual number could be much higher.

The prosecutor told the judges there is evidence that supporters of both former president Laurent Gbagbo and newly-installed President Alassane Ouattara committed war crimes during the conflict.

Human Rights Watch says ICC prosecutors have taken a “significant step” toward ensuring those who committed crimes are held responsible.

The political crisis ended on April 11, when pro-Ouattara troops captured Mr. Gbagbo in Abidjan.

Mr. Ouattara was formally sworn in as president in May. He has promised to bring justice all parties who committed crimes.

The fighting displaced up to one million people.