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International court says Ivory Coast must turn over ex-President Gbagbo's wife


AMSTERDAM — The International Criminal Court has ordered Ivory Coast to turn over Simone Gbagbo, the country's former first lady, to stand crimes against humanity charges in The Hague.

Gbagbo's husband, former President Laurent Gbagbo, is already in custody on charges including rape, murder and persecution of political opponents before his fall from power in 2011. Ivory Coast argued it, not the international court, had first right to prosecute Simone on similar charges. But ICC judges Thursday rejected that, saying the country's authorities hadn't taken "tangible, concrete and progressive steps" to prosecute her. Both Gbagbos maintain their innocence.

Separately, the court confirmed charges against an alleged co-conspirator, Charles Ble Goude. Defense lawyer Nick Kaufman said charges against Ble Goude are "politically-motivated" and he will be acquitted.

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