A Cote D’Ivoire court on Wednesday sentenced former prime minister and rebel leader Guillaume Soro to life imprisonment in absentia on charges of plotting a coup against President Alassane Ouattara.
Soro, who is in exile in Europe, was charged with conspiracy and an attempted attack on state authority. His lawyers have previously condemned the charges as politically motivated and said there was no evidence to show he was guilty.
The case has raised tensions in a country still recovering from a brief civil war a decade ago, during which Soro led the rebels that swept Ouattara to power after a disputed election.
Soro went on to serve as prime minister and speaker of parliament under Ouattara, but the two men later fell out as the president made clear he would oppose Soro’s own presidential ambitions.