FACTBOX-Key facts on rebel leader Guillaume Soro

March 29 (Reuters) - Ivory Coast's President Laurent Gbagbo on Thursday appointed rebel leader Guillaume Soro as prime minister, a presidential spokesman said.

Following are some key facts on Soro:

* Born on May 8, 1972, to parents of modest means in the village of Diawala, in the far north of Ivory Coast, near the border with Mali. His full name is Guillaume Soro Kigbafori and he says that his last name means invincible in his native Senoufou language.

* As secretary-general of the FESCI student federation, he spent a short term in prison in 1997 after being arrested for inciting student "disobedience". Later Soro went to France to study law.

* In 2000 he returned to Ivory Coast and was asked to head the youth wing of the political party of the man who became his arch enemy, current President Laurent Gbagbo.

* In 2002 he was named secretary-general of the Patriotic Movement of Ivory Coast (MPCI) and took part in a September rebellion against the government of Gbagbo, which triggered the Ivorian Civil War.

-- In December 2002, Soro's MPCI combined with two other rebel groups -- Ivorian Popular Movement of the Great West (MPIGO) and Movement for Justice and Peace (MJP) -- to create the Forces Nouvelles (New Forces). He became secretary-general of the group.

* Prime Minister Charles Konan Banny included two rebel leaders in the government in 2005. Soro was named minister of reconstruction and reinsertion while his deputy, Louis Dakoury Tabley, was made minister of war victims.

* Soro and Gbagbo signed a peace deal in March 2007 and agreed to appoint a new transitional government within five weeks.