Hundreds of fighters aligned with Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara committed grave crimes, including execution and torture during the country's recent post-election violence, according to the final report of the country's Commission of Inquiry given to the president on Wednesday.
Although the report has not yet been made public, the description of what it contains is bound to be welcomed and applauded by human rights groups, which have accused Ouattara's administration of one-sided justice. Crimes committed by Ouattara's fighters have been well-documented both by international rights groups and journalists that reported on the conflict, but despite numerous reports detailing the abuse, over a year after Ouattara seized power, only politicians and fighters allied with the president he ousted have so far been arrested.
Paulette Badjo, the head of the commission, said Wednesday that the inquiry revealed that 545 members of the Republican Forces of Ivory Coast, the army that was created to install Ouattara, committed summary executions, while 54 committed torture. By contrast, the commission found that 1,009 pro-Gbagbo fighters committed executions and 136 committed torture. The report also documents other crimes including sexual violence and extortion.
At least 3,000 people died in violence that erupted after former President Laurent Gbagbo refused to concede defeat to Ouattara in the November 2010 election. Gbagbo was detained in April 2011 and transferred to the International Criminal Court at The Hague later in the year, where he is awaiting trial on charges of crimes against humanity. Since then, more than 100 Gbagbo loyalists, including the former ruler's son and his wife, have been detained in Ivory Coast in connection with the conflict, while no fighters from Ouattara's side have been credibly investigated, prompting allegations of "victor's justice."