A defense lawyer in Ivory Coast says eight allies of former President Laurent Gbagbo will be released from prison on Thursday, even though the charges against them have not been dropped.

Herve Gouamene said late Wednesday that judges agreed to grant the provisional release of the prisoners, including former Family Minister Danielle Boni Claverie and Scientific Research Minister Joseph Kata Kete, as well as advisers.

About 100 Gbagbo allies were detained after the former strongman was forced out in April with the help of U.N. airstrikes. He is under house arrest in a remote region of the country.

His party has not submitted any candidates for upcoming legislative elections, and party leaders say they will only participate if their leader is freed.