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Ivory Coast Court Clears 10 Candidates to Run for President

FILE - Ivory Coast President Alassane Dramane Ouatarra adjusts his jacket prior to deliver a speech at the Paris' city hall, in Paris, Friday Jan. 27,

Ivory Coast's constitutional court cleared 10 candidates on Wednesday to stand in next month's presidential election including incumbent Alassane Ouattara, who is expected to win a second term in office.

The October 25 election is seen as an important step in Ivory Coast's recovery from civil war. The country is the world's top producer of cocoa and the largest economy in Francophone West Africa.

Other candidates the court adjudged to have met the criteria to run include Pascal Affi N'Guessan, leader of the biggest opposition party the Ivorian Popular Front, which is the party of former president Laurent Gbagbo.

Gbagbo is to stand trial at the International Criminal Court accused of crimes against humanity for his role in waging war rather than relinquishing power after losing a run-off election to Ouattara in 2010. Around 3,000 people died in the fighting.

Former prime minister Charles Konan Banny and the former president of the national assembly Mamadou Koulibaly are also cleared to run along with two women. In all, 33 candidates registered with the independent electoral commission.