- Former President Laurent Gbagbo, Source: VOA News
Ouattara became president when his forces arrested the former President Laurent Gbagbo who had refused to step down despite losing last year’s election. A four-month conflict during which at least 3,000 people were killed had preceded the takeover of Ouattara. The tension in certain areas has remained with ethnic conflicts and conflicts between supporters of Gbagbo and Ouattara being the main reasons. The arbitrary and summary executions of the 26 people took place in these conflict-ridden regions.
According to Guillaume Ngefa, acting human rights chief in the UN Operation in Cote d’Ivoire, “violations committed include proven cases of summary, extrajudicial executions, illegal arrests and detention, the freeing of people in return for cash, extortion and criminal rackets against numerous drivers.” The government claims that anyone responsible for the killings would be brought to justice.
The UN statement comes after the Ivorian military prosecutor said that 62 people have been detained for crimes committed during the post-election period. They are accused of illegal arrest, murder, rape, theft, arbitrary detention and recruiting mercenaries. Despite the promise of Ouattara to bring to justice perpetrators of both sides of the conflict, none of his supporters have been arrested or charged so far. Gbagbo is currently under house arrest in the north of the country.