Welcome back to the live-blog of the Charles Taylor trial. With the half-hour delay of video and audio to the media room here at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, we will begin with the summaries at 9:30 this morning (8:30 in Sierra Leone and Liberia). As noted yesterday, this rolling summary aims to be accurate, but is not a full transcript of the trial, official or otherwise.
Today we are expecting Taylor defense counsel Terry Munyard to finish his cross-examination of the first prosecution witness, Ian Smillie. The prosecution called Smillie is an expert on diamonds and their role in conflict.
From the witness list made available by the Special Court for Sierra Leone yesterday, we are expecting the prosecution to then call its first victim witness to the stand, identified for now only as TF1-015. According to information from the court, we can expect this witness to testify about:
“Personal background information.
RUF/AFRC/rebels’ attack on Koidu and the capture of civilians around March 1998.
The presence of the following RUF/AFRC/rebel commanders in Kono: Capt. Banya,
Major Rocky, Morris Kallon, Kailondo, Peleto, Staff Alhaji, Alpha Momo, Capt. Ranger.
The fact that Major Rocky spoke with a Liberian accent.
Superman’s presence at Superman ground and the receipt of reports that Savage was in Tombodu.
The RUF/AFRC/rebels holding joint meetings.
The presence of small boys among the rebels.
Civilians being sent on food finding missions.
The rape of women and women being forced to be ‘wives’.
Civilians being held in camps.
The beating of civilians.
The departure of Sam Bockarie, one of the RUF leaders, from Sierra Leone for Liberia.”