Prosecution Begins Examination of 39th Witness TF1-568-Mohamed Bereteh Kabba

9:30am: Court resumed and prosecution called its 39th witness TF1-568, Mohamed B. Kabba. The witness said he was also called Tourist. Prosecution counsel Mr. Christopher Santora asked the witness several questions about the the start of the rebel war in 1991, recruitment of the witness, various places where he was deployed, and the periods prior to and after the AFRC coup.

The Start of the Rebel War in 1991

Prosecution coulsel Mr. Santora asked the witness about the circumstances under which he got into contact with the RUF. The witness explained that he was a teacher in the Kailahun District when the RUF rebels entered the country. The witness said that they were all taken to the barry where the rebels addressed them. The rebels, he said, told them they were freedom fighters and wanted to redeem the country from the APC misrule. He said that the rebels replaced the paramount chief with a new Town Commander. The witness was appointed as deputy town commander. The witness said that they were later taken to Pendembu for training, then moved to Kailahun where they completed their training. The witness said his first assignement after the training was at Manorwa. The witness was made MP adjutant at Manorwa and that he reported directly to Sam Tua. The witness was later sent to Mobai as Target Adjutant.

Witness Becomes Radio Operator

The witness said that he was sent by CO Papa to be trained as a radio operator. This, he said, was in early 1992. The witness said he was later relocated to Pujehun, and then to Koribondo. He said he was sent as one of the RUF delegates to the Abidjan peace talks in 1996. In Abidjan, the witness said that he worked as a radio operator, and updated Fodak Sankoh in Sierra Leone regularly about the peace negotiations. The witness said that he was in Kailahun during the AFRC/RUF junta rule and his appointment there was as Regional Commander in cahrge of Communications.

Killing of Alledged Kamajors in Kailahun

The witness testified about the killing of 60 men, accused of being Kamajors by Sam Bockarie and Issa Sesay. He said that some of these people had joined the kamajor movement at some point but had now become civilians. He said that Sam Bockarie had concerns about spies infiltrating RUF territory. He therefore called all those people in order to vet them and determine those who were kamajors. The witness explained that at some point, Bockarie took five of these alledged Kamajors to the roundabout in the center of Kailahun town. The witness, together with other people pleaded with Bockarie not to kill these men but he shot two of them in everybody’s presence and ordered Issa Sesay to execute the remaining three. The witness said that Issa carried out the orders.

The witness broke into tears at this point, when he talked about the death of these individuals.