Statement: 28 October 2020

Statement by the ICC Prosecutor on the pre-election violence and mounting intercommunity tensions: “The violence seen in Côte d’Ivoire during the first pre- and post-election crisis of 2010 must not be repeated.”


My Office remains seized of the situation in Côte d'Ivoire.

I am deeply concerned by public reports and information received by my Office about an escalation of serious violence over the past few days in some towns and cities in Côte d'Ivoire ahead of the upcoming presidential elections scheduled for 31 October 2020.

I particularly deplore the allegations of intercommunal violence, which has reportedly led to people being killed or wounded, and to property belonging to the civilian population being seriously damaged. These acts could constitute crimes within the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court ("the ICC").

I call on all political actors and their supporters to show calm and restraint. The violence seen in Côte d'Ivoire during the first pre-election crisis of 2010 must not be repeated. Violence by any side of the political divide is not an option. Any person who commits, orders, incites, encourages or contributes in any other way to the commission of crimes referred to in the Rome Statute is liable to prosecution before the courts of Côte d'Ivoire or before the ICC.

I would like to reiterate that our investigations, which opened in Côte d'Ivoire in October 2011, are ongoing, and that my Office will continue to closely monitor the situation throughout the territory of Côte d'Ivoire.

The Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC conducts independent and impartial preliminary examinations, investigations and prosecutions of the crime of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression. Since 2003, the Office has been conducting investigations in multiple situations within the ICC's jurisdiction, namely in Uganda; the Democratic Republic of the Congo; Darfur, Sudan; the Central African Republic (two distinct situations); Kenya; Libya; Côte d'Ivoire; Mali; Georgia, Burundi Bangladesh/Myanmar and Afghanistan (subject to a pending article 18 deferral request). The Office is also currently conducting preliminary examinations relating to the situations in Bolivia; Colombia; Guinea; Iraq/UK; the Philippines; Nigeria; Ukraine; and Venezuela (I and II), while the situation in Palestine is pending a judicial ruling.

For further details on "preliminary examinations" and "situations and cases" before the Court, click here, and here.

Source: Office of the Prosecutor | Contact: [email protected]