The global human rights organization Amnesty International says it welcomes the trial of Mrs. Simone Gbagbo but wants local authorities to hand her over to the International Criminal Court for further trial.
In a press statement issued Monday May 9, Amnesty said while the trial of former first lady is an important step towards ending impunity in Côte d'Ivoire, it maintains that the Ivorian authorities should reconsider their refusal to comply with their obligation to surrender her to the International Criminal Court (ICC) pursuant to an arrest warrant against her on charges of crimes against humanity.
Simone Gbagbo is set to go on trial today in Abidjan on charges of crimes against humanity related to the post-election violence in 2010-2011. More than 1,000 people were killed in the violence that ensued when her husband Laurent Gbagbo refused to relinquish power after losing an election.
"Unless Côte d'Ivoire applies to the International Criminal Court to again challenge the admissibility of her case they must immediately surrender Simone Gbagbo to the ICC," said Gaëtan Mootoo, West Africa researcher for Amnesty International.
If the domestic trial continues, Côte d'Ivoire must ensure its proceedings comply with international human rights law standards, including the right to a fair trial. Côte d'Ivoire must show the world it is serious about delivering post-conflict justice to victims of all crimes," the human rights group added.