THE HAGUE, Netherlands – A former youth leader accused of involvement in murder, rapes and persecution during violence after 2010 Ivory Coast elections has appeared for the first time at the International Criminal Court.
Charles Ble Goude looked confident, pumping his fist, waving and blowing a kiss to supporters in the public gallery at the brief hearing Thursday.
He was not required to enter pleas to four crimes against humanity charges, but told Judge Silvia Fernandez "I am wrongly accused."
Violence that erupted after Ivory Coast's 2010 disputed presidential election left some 3,000 people dead.
Former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo also is in the court's detention unit. Gbagbo faces charges of involvement in atrocities carried out by his supporters after the election that saw him ousted from office.