12:30pm: Court resumed after mid-morning break and prosecution counsel Mr. Christopher Santora continued the examination of Witness TF1-568, Mohamed Kabba.
Prosecution counsel asked several questions about the killing of the 60 alledged Kamajors in Kailahun, Sam Bockarie’s relocation to Buedu, transportation of arms from Liberia to Buedu, and radio communications between Bockarie, Benjamin Yeaten and Taylor.
Killing of 60 Alledged Kamajors in Kailahun
The witness continued his explanation from the morning session about the killing of the alledged kamajors in Kailahun. The witness said that after the first five men had been killed by Bockarie and Isaa at the roundabout in Kailahun town, they went to the MP Headquarters. He said some people later came and told him that the remaining 55 men had been executed. The witness said that Bockarie then moved to Buedu, where he established the RUF headquarters. Three weeks later, the witness also moved to Buedu.
Witness Becomes Overall Signal Commander for RUF Radio Operators/Radio Communications With Liberia
The witness said that when the overall signal commander for RUF radio operators, CO Selay, died during the fight with LURD rebels in Foya, Sam Bockarie appointed him to the position of Overall Signal commander, thus putting him over all RUF radio operators in the country. The witness told the court the various radios that were operated in Liberia and Sierra Leone and the various operators assigned to said radios.
- Base One: This was the radio at Taylor’s Mansion Ground and was operated by a radio operator called Sunlight.
- Planet One: This was Sam Bockarie’s mobile radio. It was operated by Pascal, Tiger and Sebatu.
- Marvel: This was stationed inside a vehicle and was operated by the witness and an operator called Zedman.
- Lemon, later renamed Mike November Five: This was the welfare radio, stationed at the barry and was operated by three persons called Agama, Generation and Cool Rebel.
The witness said that whe ECOMOG jet raids became a threat to them, the Marvel radio was moved into a small hut near Foya, from where they operated it. The witness said that anytime an ECOMOG jet left Monrovia to attack RUF positions, Sunlight, the radio operator at Mansion Ground would call them on rdaio and say the 448 or Iron Bird was on its way. They in turn would call all other RUF radios in the various frontlines and tell the fighters to take cover.
The witness spoke about radio and telephone communications between Sam Bockarie, Charles Taylor and Benjamin Yeaten. He said that whenever Bockarie wanted to talk to Taylor, they would send a radio message to Sunlight telling him to tell their father to turn on the 2/1. When Taylor wanted to talk to Bockarie, Sunlight would give the same instruction. This, the witness said, meant they should talk on their satelite phones. The witness said when Benjamin Yeaten was based at Foya, the RUF sent a radio operator called Motiger to work with Yeaten there. He said that Osman Tolo and Memunatu Deen were also RUF radio operators based in Monrovia. He said that they communicated with Sunlight on a daily basis.
Sam Bockarie’s Trips to Liberia
The witness also spoke about Sam Bockarie’s frequent travels to Liberia. He said that whenever Bockarie left, he would say he was going to see Charles Taylor. He said when Bockarie made those visits, he would come back with arms and ammunition, food, clothing, etc. He spoke of arms and ammunition brought by Sam Bockarie which were used for the attack on Kono and the advance to Freetown in 1998/99. He said that Liberian fighters would also visit Buedu and these men were intorduced to him by Bockarie as Taylor’s men. Among the men that came to Buedu from Liberia were Jungle, Abu Keita, Senegalese, etc. The witness said that on many occasions, he spoke directly to Sun Light.
RUF Meetings in Buedu
The witness testified about meetings held in Buedu where RUF operations were planned. In one of such meetings, the plan to attack Kono was discussed. The witness said that Issa Sesay had also misplaced diamonds that were given to him to take to Liberia. That was also discussed in the meeting. He said that a plan to construct an airstrip in Buedu was also discussed in that meeting.
The witness said that the air strip was indeed constructed by civilians and RUF fighters but that flights never landed there.
The witness testified that another meeting was held at the back os Issa Sesay’s house in Buedu. At this meeting, the witness was not present but he was updated about the issues discussed by those who attended. The witness said that several commanders were present at this meeting including Liberian fighters like Jungle, Senegalese, etc. The witness said that a comprehensive plan was drawn to attack Kono and advance to Freetown.
Witness Tortured in Buedu
The witnes said that while in Buedu, a radio operator called Pascal started working with Bockarie. He said that at some point, Pascal came and told him that he had not seen the radio message/log book. He said when they told Bockarie, he (Bockarie) suspected him as having hidden the book in order to use it as evidence against him in his problem with Superman. The witness said he told Bockarie he had no hands in the loss of the book. He said Bockarie ordered that he be put in a pit for one week. He said he was tortured by Bockarie during the one week he spent in the pit. He said he was later released when Bockarie realised that he was innocent.
Court adjourned for the day.