Democratic Republic of Congo's former vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba has left the detention centre of the International Criminal Court following his acquittal of war crimes after a decade behind bars, his lawyer said on Wednesday.
The former rebel commander turned politician "left the DU (detention unit) yesterday evening," the former warlord's lawyer, Peter Haynes, told AFP.
He was acquitted on appeal last Friday in a surprise decision, with the ICC ruling that he could not be held criminally liable for crimes committed by his troops in the Central African Republic in 2002-2003.
Bemba, 55, had been sentenced unanimously to 18 years in 2016 by ICC trial judges after a decade behind bars following his arrest in Belgium.
Haynes said Bemba plans to return to Brussels to be united with his wife and five children.
A source familiar with the matter said Bemba had left the ICC detention centre but remained under observation by the court pending a green light from the Belgian authorities.
"Mr Bemba will remain within the ICC's sphere until he is released into the care of a state willing to accept him," most probably Belgium, the source told AFP.