The International Criminal Court says it will investigate possible crimes against humanity in the upheavals that followed presidential elections in the Ivory Coast.
Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo has told the court reasonable suspicion exists that serious crimes were committed in the West African state.
The court appointed a panel of judges Friday to evaluate the prosecutor's evidence.
The court was acting on a request by President Alassane Ouattara, who will be inaugurated on Saturday, to investigate the violence.
More than 1,000 civilians were killed in the conflict that erupted after both Ouattara and former president Laurent Gbagbo declared themselves the winner of last November's election.
Rights activists say both sides are suspected of crimes.