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Simone Gbagbo will not be handed over to the ICC - Ivorian PM

Simone Gbagbo will not be handed over to the ICC - Ivorian PM

Ivory Coast

Ivory Coast’s former first lady Simone Gbagbo will not be transferred to the International Criminal Court (ICC) to face war crimes charges, Prime Minister Daniel Kablan Duncan has said.

Duncan who is in Paris to chair a meeting on Ivory Coast’s development plan affirmed the government’s decision not comply with an arrest warrant from the ICC against the former first lady.

The warrant of arrest was issued against the 66-year-old in 2012 and till date, the case remains in the pre-trial stage at the Hague-based court

Simone is wanted for her role in the country’s 2010 post-election unrest that saw more than 3,000 people die.

Nevertheless, Duncan maintained that Simone Gbagbo will still face trial in the country on May 31 for crimes against humanity.

The former first lady is currently serving a 20-year jail sentence after she was found guilty by an Ivorian court in March of undermining state security.

Popularly referred to as the ‘Iron Lady’ during her husband’s reign, Simone Gbagbo was arrested in an assault backed by the UN and French troops.

Last week, Amnesty International said that Ivorian authorities should reconsider their refusal to comply with their obligation to surrender her to the ICC.

She has been charged by the ICC with crimes against humanity, including murder, rape, and persecution.

Her husband is currently on trial before the ICC for crimes against humanity in relation to the post-election violence.

News Agencies