Prosecutor calls for pilots to be tried over bombing that killed French soldiers

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In 2004 a bombing raid killed nine French soldiers and an American aid worker at Bouaké in Ivory Coast. Fourteen years later, and after years of painstaking investigation in the face of bureaucratic obstruction from the French authorities, prosecutors in Paris have said that three pilots should stand trial over the attack. As Antton Rouget reports, it could also pave the way for three senior French government ministers at the time - Dominique de Villepin, Michèle Alliot-Marie and Michel Barnier – to stand trial too.

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They may not get the full truth, but it looks as if the families of the victims of a bombing raid that killed nine French soldiers and an American humanitarian worker in the Ivory Coast 14 years ago will see the alleged perpetrators face trial. The vice-prosecutor of Paris, Michel Guedes, has officially called for three pilots who are suspected of carrying out the raid in Bouaké in November 2004 to be tried. It could also help pave the way for three senior French government ministers at the time - Dominique de Villepin, Michèle Alliot-Marie and Michel Barnier – to stand trial one day too. The ministers face claims – which they deny – that they hindered the initial investigation into the killings.