ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast, Aug. 10 (UPI) — A lawyer for former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo said the current government can’t call for reconciliation while simultaneously arresting former officials.
Herve Gouamene, a lawyer for Gbagbo, said he condemned the arrest of former regime officials in Ivory Coast by the government of President Alassane Ouattara.
“What we deplore is the bizarre nature of this — the lawyers aren’t informed,” he told the BBC. “At the same time they talk about reconciliation they go after those who were close to Gbagbo and they’re attacked simply for being linked to Gbagbo.”
Michel Gbagbo, the 41-year-old son of the former Ivorian president, was among 12 allies of the former leader charged with taking part in violence during a political impasse that pushed the country toward civil war. More than two dozen Gbagbo allies were already charged.
Gbagbo refused to step down after the international community recognized Ouattara as the winner of a November presidential election.
Ouattara has called on the International Criminal Court to investigate alleged atrocities committed during the standoff, which ended with Gbagbo’s arrest in April.
Human rights groups accuse both sides of human rights abuses during the conflict.