Taylor Wanted United Nations Authorization For Use Of Force In Sierra Leone

Charles Taylor supported the decision of West African states to remove the Sierra Leonean junta from power in 1998, but wanted any use of force for that purpose to be authorized by the United Nations Security Council, he told Special Court for Sierra Leone judges today.

As a member of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Committee of Five – a group designed to bring peace to Sierra Leone — that he had no option but to support the decision to oust the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) junta from power and restore the democratic government of Ahmed Tejan Kabbah, Taylor said.

“Liberia pledged its support for the ECOWAS decision to restore the government of President Kabbah to power,” Taylor told the judges.  He said that if Liberia had the military man power, he would have contributed troops to remove the junta from power by force.

Taylor told the judges that he was troubled that Nigeria wanted to use force to remove the junta in Sierra Leone but since he was part of the Committee of Five, he had no option but to get along with what had been agreed.

“I am troubled but I am part of the process,” he said when he told judges about the decision to use force in Sierra Leone.

Taylor said that when the military intervention to remove the AFRC junta from power started in February 1998, his Liberian foreign minister, together with other West African foreign ministers, traveled to New York to address the UN Security Council on why the operation was necessary. He said that members of the Security Council, especially Britain, were opposed to the use of force in Sierra Leone without express authorization from the United Nations.

Taylor explained that his initial opposition to the use of force in Sierra Leone stemmed from the fact that any use of force without UN authorization would have had a spill-over effect on Liberia, which was just stepping out of its own conflict. He said that when tensions mounted in Sierra Leone, he closed the Sierra Leone-Liberia border so as to protect his own people.

Taylor told the judges that when he became president in 1997, he traveled to Guinea where he met with President Tejan Kabbah, who was in exile due to his overthrow by the AFRC. Taylor said his meeting with Kabbah was very cordial and there was no concern that he was supporting the AFRC.

“There was no hostility towards me by Kabbah,” he said.

Taylor denied all allegations that he was a terrorist, saying that it was a phrase developed by former United States President George Bush, but its use has now been stopped by President Obama. He said western countries were opposed to him because he wanted an African solution to an African problem.

“I resent being labeled a terrorist. Africa has to be free, Africa has to determine its own destiny,” he said.

The prosecution has alleged that Taylor supported the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebels and the AFRC junta in Sierra Leone and that by his actions or inactions, he is responsible for crimes such as murder, rape and the recruitment of children as soldiers in Sierra Leone.  Taylor has denied all the allegations.

Taylor’s testimony continues tomorrow.


  1. We have talked alot about Taylor’s performance so far on the witness stand. I think we also need to congratulate Mr. Courtenay Griffiths who has been magnificent as a lawyer. Do you notice how he not only directs the examination but also will switch and cross examine Mr. Taylor also. Using this strategy is preparing Taylor for cross examination by the prosecution. My guess is that neither prosecutor Brenda Hollis or Stephen Rapp have never come across a witness like Mr. Taylor. I only wish David Crane was still on the case so Mr. Taylor could make a complete fool of him

    1. First of all Mr. AKI, David Crane is not in hiding. If you are looking for him so badly, I can tell you where he is. He teaches at the University of Syracuse In New York. He is no match to Mr. Taylor and the interlecture coherence of Mr. Griffith, the lead defense council, and the entire defense team. As the matter of fact, David Crane will even be worse than the current prosecutors. For example, can you imagin David Crane unsealing the indictment of a seating president while he was discussing on how to bring peace to Liberia and the subregion? There are U.N resolutions that prohibates the indictment of seating president; and that exactly what your “GENIUS” did. However, I hope Mr. Taylor will touch on that. David Crane is a narcicist. He set the the prosecution up for failure; and that is why the prosecutions are struggling as evidence of what we are watching on the screan.

      1. Jose Rodriquez,
        Please re read my post. I think you wil find out that you and I are in agreement.

    2. Yes, Aki, I strongly agreed with you. Mr. Griffiths is a master brain. I’m sure that with God above, and Griffiths on Mr. Taylor side, good will previl over evil in this case.

  2. Mr. Taylor, your admissions in earlier testimonies to having dealings with, and proving residance to RUF masterminds Foday Sankor and Sam Bockaire aka mosquito, who was killed by your right handman Benjamin yaeten who said at the time that he was acting under your direct orders.was this intended silence mosquito in this trial? or are you wrongly being accused again? remember these judges are not stupid and lies will get you nowhere this time around.

    1. Ziggy Salis, either you’re being oblivious, dismisive of the facts, or you are not just following the trial. According to Mr. Taylor’s testimony concerning the residence that he provided for Ruf/Afrc, He said that he was serving within the capacity as a point man on the committee of 5 that was established and endorsed by Ecowas to bring about peace in Sierraleone. Most importantly, he was following precedence that was also carried out in the Ivory Coast in providing housing facility for the same. However, you have just reminded me of some Liberian Websites that just regurgitate the daily summary transcript posted from the trial’s website as oppose to actually listening to the testimony and giving their independent analysis and report. Nice try; not this time, because we are all watching this trial.

      1. You want us to believe that those organisations ask him to continue to harbour Sam Bockarie when he fled Sierra Leone? He sent him to another mission in the Ivory Coast and let him killed to eliminate future witnesses.

        1. Bobson, you’re just too clever by half. I can care less if you believe or disbelieve whether President Taylor was named the point man within the committee of five that was setup to bring peace to Sierraleone by Ecowas and endorsed by the U.N. That’s your problem. your personal opinion represents your own views. The fact remains that President Taylor worked so hard to bring lasting peace to Sierraleone. Instead of them rewarding him with a noble peace prize award winner, they indicted him. What a shame. These Western Powers continue to profit from the misery and ignorance of some Africans like you. However, what is so patternly offensive is the total disregard of their own rules that they have established. Why are they cherry picking among the various presidents? Where is Ellen Johnson, Alihaji Kromah, Prince Johnson, Daminte Conneh, Thomas Nimeley, ect. All from Liberia. Where is Teajan Kabbah of Sierraleone? How about Lassana Conteh and his lieutenants from Guinea? Bobson, we will not allow your loud and tumultuous behavior to label Africans as stupid people.

    2. I’m not sure if you are following this case with understanding. Please understand that Sam Bockaire was given residence in Monrovia with the knowledge and aproval of the UN and ECOWAS in order to bring peace in Sierra Leone. As for Sankor, Mr. Taylor association with him was 1991 which is outside of what we are discussing here. Mr. Taylor is being accused for his alleged support to the RUF while serving as elected president not as rebel leader in Liberia. Benjamin Yaeten at no time said that he was acting on order of Mr. Taylor. I challenge you to bring any fact to this false statement.

    3. ziggy,
      There was evidence put infront of this court by the prosecutors thru one of thier star witnesses, Mr. Moses Blah. He told this court that Sam died in a fire fight at the border with Ivory Coast…fighting against MODEL another group that funded by some elements within the US.

    4. Ziggy Salis,

      You are right the judges are not stupid. That is why they will realize that none of the living RUF leaders have accused Mr. Taylor of supporting them. Remember the RUF nnd AFRC leaders were also put on trial . Don’t depend on dead people to defend your position.

  3. Charles Taylor we really do not want you to tell lies over in the court. Just say how the war in Sierra Leone started. We all know it all started, when you started fighting as a freedom fighter. That was what they send you to do. FIGHT FOR FREEDOM FOR THE LIBERIAN PEOPLE. When you went your own way you became a terrorist to them. If you can be truthful to the Liberian people to say the truth it will be good for them. Everybody want to know how you got to Sierra Leone but they are forgetting that you statred in Liberia before you got to Sierra Leone and I do not know why they do not want you to explain to us how it all started.
    To know the root causes of the war we need to know the primary actors and the secondary actors.

    1. Agnes Fallah-Kamara Umunna why don;t you go and testify against Charles but sit in the comfort of you home and talk trash. Look we are dealing with a court of law and not at the market where anything can be said for free or what i call loose talk!

      Looking at the Prosecutions and the nonsense Charles Taylor has made them look in the court, Am surprised people like you still have the comfort to come on this website and talk TRASH! Daaaaaaam!

      1. Nii Darku, I will not go and testify against Charles Taylor. Please ask the the BLACK AND WHITE People that took him from the prison to go and testify against him. Am not talking trash. Maybe you are talking trash. We should not try to forget that it started from somewhere and we need to know where it all started. If you are dealing with a COURT OF WAR, that is why the court of law should have all their facts correct. What is loose talk? It is very simple for the court to tell us if they have all their facts in place correct. Tell me all the BLOOD DIAMOND MONEY where did it go? The UKRAINE ARMS they used in the Sierra Leone war. Where did it come from? Tell me where did it come from, please. They are wasting time and money on Charles Taylor. Let them used some of the money for the victims they are fighting for justice. The victims do not even have clean water to drink or health centers and good roads to their villages that the war destroyed. Please think very well.

    2. Ziggy Salis, Agnes Fallah-Kamara Umunna,

      Can either one of you say why the prosecutor put all those liars on the stand and not people like yourselves who claim to know the truth.

      1. Ken, Please do not tell me the persecutor do not know who to bring to the court to say the truth. We do not know all the truth that is why we are asking them to bring those that know the whole truth.

  4. I have a simple question for you Agnes Fallah. Who sent Mr. Taylor to fight for freedom for the Liberia people as the way you’ve alleged? Remember, you are on record by saying “they sent him.”

    1. Jose, these Taylor’s prosecutors are simply a bunch of HATE-FILLED individuals who are feeding on their old supremacist beliefs to expliot Africa. How else was it possible for ULIMO to be trading with RUF but yet it is Taylor’s fault? The prosecution case borders on insanity and exposes the hidden racism packaged as human rights. If these prosecutors are so concern about human rights why not prosecute the Kamajors and ULIMO. Remember that these two groups used Liberian territory to launch war into SL. Gosh!!!

      1. Mr. Gray, I couldn’t agree with you more. They are cherry picking amongst the various presidents and warring factions in Africa. Unfortunately, President Taylor is a easy target for them. He’s being single out. If President Taylor had just agreed to give them the African resources, He would had been president for live, especially with his own popularity in Liberia and the subregion.

  5. Agnes,
    Did you follow this trial? If you did then you should have the answers to your question. Did yo hear what was said about the Sierra Leoneans being in training long before Taylor ever went to Libya? Why are you asking the same quesions that have been answered? Why do the Sierra Leoneans not want to take responsibility for their own actions in their country? Why do they want to blame Liberians? Are they idiots that can be used as ponds in someone else’s game? They fought their war and killed and maimed themselves. Now they want to find a scapegoat (Charles Taylor).

    Please Sierra Leone, you did things to yourself. You did not need Taylor to come and make you do things to yourself. You have always allowed the white man to use you. Now do not let them use you to paint your problems on Liberia.

    we all abhor what happened to your people but we had our own problems and did not need to add your to it. You all went a bit too far but do not make it look as if you needed Liberians to teach you to be wicked to yourself. We did not chop off the hands of our people in Liberia so why would we want to do it in Sierra leone. This is a intrinsic Sierra Leonean thing.

  6. Those who think Taylor will get off the hook are day dreaming. The man has already admitted dealing with the RUF between 1991 and 1992, exchanging arms and ammunitions and sending some of his fighters there. Although he is claiming those moves were to counter the threat posed by ULIMO, the fact remains he has admitted his guilt. I was surprised at his admission.

    1. Bobson,
      You seem to be one of those people who are listening to the facts of the case but are refusing to hear them.

      1. Don’t forget the prosecution still has a chance to cross-examine him to expose his lies and let him incriminate himself further. The chances that he will be freed are basically nill.

        He has admitted himself that he had an association with the RUF. For whatever reasons or duration he supported the RUF is irrelevant. The fact is he sent fighters in Sierra leonean soil and he was exchanging arms and ammunitions with the bandits.

        1. Bobson, the prosecution can take all the time they need. We can care less. They almost took over six years to prepare for this case and up to present, they are at least still not prepared. In contrast, the defense at least had up to three weeks to debunk, dislodge, and demolish the false rumors of the prosecution. On the other hand, you said that the chances of President Taylor being a free man is “basically nil. Are you telling us that the case has been prejudged, prelitigated and verdict rendered? Where did you get your news from? we will like to know.

      2. Aki, that says it all. I don’t have to even respond. You’ve just debunked and demolished Bobson’s false argument against president Taylor. Good job buddy.

    2. Bobson,
      This court is MANDATED to hear cases of those who were SERIOUS VIOLATORS since Nov 96…..by your own admission, ’91 & 92 are years away from ’96 or do you have a special calendar???

      To put it in simple words……there is where the prosecutors are having problems….NO FACTUAL LINKS and Mr. Taylor has shown this court it was the opposite.

  7. Aki, I didn’t mean to demean your points that you stressed concerning David crane. However, I concurred with you. the point that I was trying to make was being sarcastic subliminally about David Crane.

  8. Taylor, do not worry you will be free once Colonel Muamar Ghaddafi,Blaise Compaoré and Johnson sirleaf are living free they have you back.

  9. Let it be no doubts, President Taylor and Defense Council Griffith are actually smarter than the credit they give them. The spectacular performance that was demonstrated by these men today is just immeasurable to anything I’ve ever seen. It is like an NBA game where the playmaker makes a play for the BIG GUY to just come and finish it up by dunking the ball into the ring. Griffiths is the playmaker and Taylor is the BIG GUY. Usually, when these BIG GUYS dunk the ball, they celebrate by showing the circumference of their muscles. If this case was a NBA Playoff game, the prosecution team will be swept by the defense team.

  10. Agnes fallah-kamara Umunna, I wonder if you’re a Liberian? Because it seems to me that you don’t know much about the war in liberia and that of Sierra Leone. If you’re following the trial as you have said, you should know that Mr.Taylor told the court that he help RUF from August 1991 to May 1992 and that has been proven in the court by documentation.

    The AFRC who took over the Government of Sierra Leone had Liberians who were not from the former NPFL of Mr. Taylor instead they were former AFL and ULIMO soldiers who were part of the Sierra Leonean Army and on Salary and there were 5,000 of them known as the STF ( Special Task Force) fighting along side the Sierra Leonean Army. I myself I am a Militaty man Serving in the World most powerful Military and I know for a fact that Mr. Taylor couldn’t have supported RUF with weapons while ULIMO in controled of Cape mount, Bomi, Lofa and part of Bong Counties. How was the arms getting to Sierra Leone from Taylor control areas?

    Some of the Prosecutions witnesses have said that, that whole western part of Liberia all the way to Lofa was out of Taylor Since 1992 up to the election in 1997. So my question to is, how did RUF continue to fight from 1991 to August 2, 1997 at which time Taylor became President of Liberia?

    Oh by the way, there is a letter that Sam Bockarie wrote to Sankor detailing how he was able to get weapons to continue fighting in Sierra Leone while Sankor was still in Ivory Coast for a very long time and later got arrested in Nigeria. And you know who Bockarie got the Weapons from? ULIMO in 1996 and he continue to get weapons from ULIMO through out that the period. Did you know that ECOMOG was training people in Liberia to fight in Sierra Leone in 1997 and 1998? If you’re eollowing this trial, you should know these things; therefore, you need to do alot research before you talking junk here.

  11. Noko4, I have been reading your comments for the past four years and you’ve always been consistent and coherent. you’re a fine and good Liberian. I stand corrected if you are not a liberian. However, I regret joining this dialogue late. Thanks to you and the rest of the guys that have been fighting for Africa and the Liberian people.

  12. Bobson

    I started hearing about RUF when I was in school in Bo in 1987, well before I hard the name Charles Taylor. Is just our sierra leonean people are so backward thinking like yourself when this case is about Taylor as president was arming RUF. To say he has admitted his guilt for saying in he had business with RUF in 91-92 so he should be hang, is not admissible in a civilised world. This is not Sierra Leonean justice or Nigeria where people can just make up stories like Boko Haram incident this week and expect everyone to believe them. The only thing I can agree with you is that the people who had put him there the Tony Bliars, and so called human right organisations in London and America want to see this guy jailed to justify the millions of their tax payers money they have wasted, the judges may want to satisfy them. But Mr Taylor will walk free out of there

    1. Excellent point Peto. Your points are phenomenally awesome. President Taylor will walk free like Ellen JohnsonSirleaf, Tejan Kabbah, and etc.

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