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ICC orders conditional release of former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo

ICC orders conditional release of former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo
International Criminal Court prosecutors at The Hague have ordered the conditional release of former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo, though he is forbidden from returning to the country.

Gbagbo and his former Minister for Sports and Youth Charles Blé were cleared of crimes against humanity charges last month for their alleged role in post-election violence in 2010 and 2011. A five-judge panel voted unanimously in favor of releasing the pair “to a state willing to accept them on its territories.”

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However, The Hague is still considering detaining Gbagbo pending an appeal on his acquittal by the prosecution, who have suggested releasing the men into the custody of a country neighboring the Netherlands and ordering them to relinquish their passports.

“It is impossible to limit the freedom of an innocent person,” chief defense lawyer Emmanuel Altit pointed out to the court.

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