The Hague, October 14, 2011 (FH) - The Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno Ocampo, began on Friday a two day visit to Côte d'Ivoire at the invitation of President Alassane Ouattara.

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In a statement released upon his arrival, Ocampo declared being "grateful to President Ouattara" for the invitation. ICC's delegation is expected to meet opposition members, victims, as well as members of the Truth, Dialogue and Reconciliation Commission, which was inaugurated in Yamoussoukro in September.

This Commission "has a crucial mandate to contribute to the prevention of new crimes, the establishment of individual responsibilities and the reconciliation of all Ivorians", Ocampo wrote.

The statement also said election related developments in Côte d'Ivoire and neighboring countries, such as Liberia, would be closely monitored as they "could affect [the process of] stabilization throughout the West African region".

First results from Liberia's presidential election show incumbent President and Nobel Prize winner Ellen Johnson Sirleaf well ahead of 15 rivals but not by a sufficient margin to avoid a run-off.

On October 3, judges at the International Criminal Court (ICC) authorized Moreno Ocampo to investigate alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Côte d'Ivoire since the second round of presidential elections in November 2010. The UN estimates that more than 3,000 people were killed in violence that broke out after Laurent Gabgbo refused to accept the victory of the internationally recognized winner Alassane Ouattara.

Gbagbo was arrested on April 11, 2011, by Ouattara forces assisted by the French. He is currently being detained in Korhogo, northern Côte d'Ivoire.


© Hirondelle News Agency