Taylor Negotiated With RUF Rebels For The Release Of UN Hostages; Says ECOMOG Traded Diamonds and Arms With the RUF

Charles Taylor explained how he successfully negotiated the release of United Nations peacekeepers who were held hostage by rebel forces in Sierra Leone during his continuing testimony in The Hague today. Meanwhile while his defense team highlighted a United Nations report alleging that West African peacekeepers were involved in diamond and arms trade with Sierra Leonean rebels.

In May 2000, when Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebels took more than 500 United Nations peacekeepers hostage in Sierra Leone, Mr. Taylor said that he was mandated by Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) leaders and the United Nations to negotiate with the RUF rebels and secure the release of the hostages. Speaking on behalf of the international community, Mr. Taylor said he expressed his anger to the RUF rebels and told them the hostages needed to be released without any conditions.

Mr. Taylor said he called Issa Sesay, the RUF commander who was in possession of the UN hostages, to meet him in Liberia where the release of the peacekeepers was agreed. Mr. Taylor said ECOWAS leaders, UN and the United States Embassy officials were all informed that he was meeting with Issa Sesay.

“I was very tied up with this particular situation. I made it clear to Issa Sesay that the UN peacekeepers must be released unconditionally and voiced to him the outrage of the international community,” Mr. Taylor said.

“I was not speaking with Issa Sesay as Taylor but I was speaking for ECOWAS, the African Union and the entire international community. I told Issa that the worst they could play with was the United Nations. I was very upset and thought they were very stupid. I told him the UN people had to be released unconditionally. This was not a friendly chat,” Mr. Taylor explained.

Issa Sesay, Mr. Taylor said, eventually facilitated the release of the hostages to Liberian authorities in Liberia before they were all handed over to the UN.

After the abduction of the United Nations peacekeepers in May 2000, RUF leader Foday Sankoh was arrested and put into custody by the government of Sierra Leone. Mr. Taylor told the judges today that because the RUF needed a leadership with whom to negotiate, he convened a meeting of ECOWAS heads of states and together, they all named Issa Sesay as interim leader of the RUF.

Mr. Taylor’s defense counsel also read in court today a 2000 United Nations report which indicated that the Nigerian ECOWAS Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) peacekeepers in Sierra Leone were involved in trading diamonds in return for guns with the RUF rebels.

The prosecution has alleged that Mr. Taylor was involved in trading diamonds in return for guns with RUF rebels in Sierra Leone. Mr. Taylor today dismissed this allegation, calling it “total nonsense.”

“There is no such thing as Foday Sankoh selling me diamonds,” Mr. Taylor said.

Mr. Taylor further said that he believed the allegation in the UN report that Nigerian ECOMOG peacekeepers sold guns to the RUF in return for diamonds was true, because while he was a rebel leader, he had the same transaction with the Nigerian ECOMOG peacekeepers in Liberia.

“There is nothing new about ECOMOG selling arms to rebel groups. I Charles Ghankay Taylor bought arms and ammunition from ECOMOG peacekeepers in Liberia during the civil war even while we were fighting them,” he said.

Mr. Taylor also told the judges today that he did not believe that diamonds played any role in the Sierra Leone conflict. “There is not sufficient evidence to really make such conclusion,” he said. Mr. Taylor said that he also could not tell whether the warring factions in Sierra Leone used diamonds to fuel the conflict in the country.

Mr. Taylor is being tried on allegations that he provided support to RUF rebels in Sierra Leone through the supply of arms and ammunition in return for diamonds. Diamonds, the prosecution says, were used by Mr. Taylor and RUF rebel leaders to fuel the conflict in Sierra Leone and that through his acts or omissions, Mr. Taylor bears responsibility for the crimes committed by RUF rebels in Sierra Leone. Mr. Taylor has denied the allegations. He is presently testifying as a witness in his own defense.

Mr. Taylor’s testimony continues tomorrow.


  1. Again this man is not just saying things that making me to think and think. Why are they keeping him this long in the Hague? Almost everything he did the International Community knew about it. Besides he got documents and we are all seeing it. Did the International community entrust him with all of these task to disgrace in the he been treated? I think so and I strongly belive more Sierra Leonean are convince now that Taylor was not the cause of their war. The former president of Sierra Leone need to be ask in time to come as well.With all of these do the judges still need witness to take the stand. For peace sake let us leave sleeping do to sleep.
    God will surely see you through Taylor

    1. This trial will go to the entire process. The court or judges can not at this time make a judgment to set Mr. Taylor free. Only the prosecution can stop or drop this trial. At this point it is better for the judges to find Mr. Taylor guilty or not guilty.

      We also must be careful when we speak about the international community as a whole. I think it was not the international community as a whole who was out to get Mr. Taylor, but certain countries. The U.S.A and the U.K and mainly the U.K. are the ones behind this chaos in Sierra Leone.

  2. Tracey,
    What is happen with the Transcripts? I cannot get up that early in the morning to watch the trial, but I do look forward to read the Transcripts to keep up.

    1. Hi Ken,

      The Special Court usually posts the transcripts fairly quickly, although they seem to be a few days behind at the moment. However, the transcripts are still available from the Special Court’s website – go to http://www.sc-sl.org and then look under the “cases” heading and then go to the Taylor case. The transcripts should be readily accessible. In the meanwhile, I hope our summaries are somewhat helpful, even though they can’t give you the full details of everything that happened during the day.


      1. Thank you Tracey, your summaries are very helpful. I read them first but I like reading the transcripts, its like read a good book.

        Thank again

        1. Ken — I know exactly what you mean. This trial is so fascinating — it is hard to get enough information about it, right? It looks like the Special Court have now posted all the transcripts up to yesterday’s.

  3. Leoroy,
    The International community is just not not fair at all.
    i was just reading that mr. bemba from Congo is goin o be free on bail while be try by the icc but mr. taylor cannot.
    but we are all watching because we all know that mr taylor is not responsible for any thing that happen in that country.

    1. Mr. Taylor tried to flee, the first time they asked for his arrest. I’m starting to have second doubts about this man’s guilt. With all the evidence he’s providing, the prosecution have a lot of work ahead of them with the cross examination.

      1. Albert,
        Did he really try to flee? I am confuse here; The brother has substantial informations,why would such a man want to flee with the kind of evidenses he is submitting? I do not want to believe that whole fleeing thing. TAYLOR IS A BRAVE MAN!!! and I know for sure we will hear the true about that other saga.

  4. This trial has become The Show with Charles Taylor aka James Brown saying to the World aka JB’s(band)……

    JB………Fellows I am ready to get up and do my thang……
    The Band……Go ahead
    JB……..I want to get into it man you know….like it like it sex machine man, moving doing it you know; can I count it off….1 2 3 4…….BAM BAM BAM

    How long much will this show continues…..look at the charges and see his activities during that same time frame and he is LINKED to those crimes?? If this is not COLD SWEAT for a black man who told those white men, I AM BLACK AND PROUD so why don’t you OPEN THE DOORS AND I GET IT MYSELF instead bringing the LICKING STICKS thinking I was going to do the MOTHER POPCORN???

  5. Leoroy and weah, everything taylor is saying was already in the public domain and most people who follow the conflict know that. The fact that Taylor was involve with ECOWAS commitee does not mean he still do not have charges to answer to.

    The question will remain as to how much power and influence did he really wheel in/within the Ruf, to many the answeris still too much. Trying to explain how he help peace keepers because the UN asked him to does not mean he did not already have influence or controlling influence in the RUF. Anybody who really understood and saw how the conflict in sierra leone unfolded know Taylor support and by largely controlled the RUF.

    Was it wrong for him to be associated with Ruf, my answer is NO. It is his conduct during that association that is been questioned. His continual denial is not going to get him anywhere. His personal association with RUF, is one of the most documented in west african gureilla warefare history and if his only defence is that i did not do anything, I was setup by the “whiteman”, then his going to find himself in a large pot pickle with no way to swin out, because that will not wash with any sensible person looking at the facts. Trying to blame ECOMOG will not also work, unless he can show it was ECOMOG policy to sell arms to arm group. Individual soldiers selling arms is not the same.
    The prosecutiuon is arguing that Taylor as PRESIDENT of Liberia did sell/supply arm in exchange or to allow him access to diamond in sierra leone, by using liberian state property including personnel and in doing so aided and conspire with RUF to commit these crimes.That is different from few Ecomog soldier involving in criminal activities. We have seen people in his employ making statements to that effect.

    His must concentrate on the relatioship between him and ruf, becasue there was one way beyond Ulimo. Taylor is been tried for the period when Ulimo did not largely exist an arm group. Trying to pin his defence on proxy will not work either. I guess taylor has a long way to go yet before he realises the game is up and needs to come clean.

    1. Eagle-Eye,
      If what you’re saying are a TRUE…..why didn’t any of the former SENIOR RUF fighters that stood trial in Freetown tell the same tale??? In this case, a STATUE REPORT was read, written by Mr Sam Bockerie, and NO WHERE within that report did he head the name Charles Taylor. Mr Bockerie was telling his boss, Mr. Sankoh, on the ACTIVITIES of RUF while he Sankoh was in jail. If Mr. Taylor had so much controll as you claimed, why wasn’t he THANK or referenced???

      Moreso Eagle-Eye, evidences presented by the prosecutors witnesses and the defense stated his relationship as in PARTNERSHIP with RUF ended in May of ’92. So then why is he on trial??

      Simply and I hope this will be your guide and guard…..two witnesses told this court that Mr. Taylor and RUF signed a PACT in ’94. Where is the document to support this claim?? No document. So how did they know?? Someone told someone, and that someone told someone and that other someone told them; in other words HEARSAY.

      So based on those two witnesses words, we are in court because Mr. Taylor was NOT physically in Sierra Leone when those crimes were committed. I now ask you HOW CAN ONE PROVE HEARSAY when all the other SOMEONES are dead???

      Mind you, Sankoh, Bockarie and Sesay NEVER EVER mentioned Mr. Taylor was their GOD FATHER. Documents were presented as evidence TOTALLY OPPOSITE of how RUF was funded plus HOW LIBERIANS believed to be send by Mr. Taylor came to Sierra Leone and became fighters as told by the prosecutors. Documents presented to this court showed the workings of ECOMOG in Sierra Leone.

      Have you read the MANDATE of this court?? If so, how can this man be SELECTED to do all he can be at the same time sending arms when he had no arms, the border was controlled by ECOMOG/UNMIL???

      You see Eagle-Eye, we can ONLY judge this case on what are presented in court and NOT what we believe in our minds to be…..so look at the evidences and judicate the case. The prosecutors STRONGEST evidence was HEARSAY……does that prove his guilt beyond reasonsible doubt??? No not when he is providing DOCUMENTS.

    2. Eagle-eye,

      Excellent points. I believe that Taylor’s defense team is aware of the uphill task that they are face with and they will in due course address all of the concerns that you raised. but for this medium I wanted to comment on few of your points.

      while it is true that what Taylor is saying must have already being known to the public, their presentation in court as evidence to rebut allegations is a completely different matter. For instance the public knew of the presence of Johnny Paul Koroma and Sam Bockarie in Monrovia, but the defense proved that their being in Monrovia was approved by the UN and ECOWAS. The prosecution on the other hand did not do due diligence to this fact. In short, the defense in going along with the rule 98 decision suggesting that Taylor had questions to answer.

      A second view of the current defense depiction of Taylor is to rebut claims that Taylor had been a bogeyman in the sub-region. But here we see peace-broker, a diplomat and african brotherhood picture of Taylor, one that the prosecution failed to acknowledge.

      Common knowledge of Taylor’s influence over and control of RUF is not sufficient in eye of law. That claim of control must be supported by evidence. unfortunately prosecution admitted at closing that they did not have first hand evidence so they had to rely on second hand evidence. The meaning is the prosecution is depending on the defense case for evidence and the defense in my view is on the right footing.

      We all know that this charge of Taylor quest for Sierra Leone diamond from RUf was done in exchange for arms/ammunition is bogus. If you are a Liberian, you know that Liberia has huge deposit/reserve of diamond in the lofa bridge/waesua area. The same diamond belt that runs through sierra leone. So that charge is shear nonesense as Taylor as President was sitting on huge reserve.

      Whatever the situation, I believe Taylor defense is up to the task and we shall se how the jurists rule.

  6. If Taylor traded diamonds for arms with ECOMOG, what could have prevented him from doing the same with RUF? He was president and the primary point of contact negotiating on behalf of committee of five. Since there were no mechanism in place monitoring the interaction between Taylor and the RUF leader during their meetings, it cannot be totally ignored the a possible arms-diamond exchange could have taken place. Although, the burden of proof rests with the prosecution.

    1. Elbee,
      Where did Mr. Taylor say he traded DIAMOND for ARMS with ECOMOG?? He said he bought arms from certain units of ECOMOG to fight certain units. Please let’s go on the words been presented in this court and NOT what he heard or believe we know to be FACTS.

      Documents were presented that RUF did trade with ECOMOG also….what did they trade with, oh well, according to those documents…..DIAMOND FOR ARM.

      Do you see the difference here??? Please DO NOT mix up the evidences.

    2. Elbee,

      Good point….so what evidence that you or the prosecutors have that he traded “diamonds for guns” with RUF? I am waiting! FYI, CT said he bought arms from ECOMOG, he didn’t mention the medium of exchange, albeit diamonds, cash, log etc…you man you running fast oh…check ur brake before you crash oh.

      1. Noko, Bnker!

        Thanks for the correction: Charles Taylor bought arms from ECOMOG… medium of exchange unknown. But my point of concern is that the business of arms trade is not something new to Taylor and we cannot ignore that the prosecution’s claim could have some element of truth. There are no evidence to prove that his interaction with RUF was ONLY in the interest of peace in SL.

        In my opinion, neither the prosecution nor the defense has produced any concrete evidence to confirm or contradict the claim that Taylor traded arms for diamond with RUF. Although, the burden of proof rest on the prosecution.

        We should also not forget that Taylor’s testimony can be used against him during cross-examination. So he has to choose his words carefully.

        1. Elbee,

          You have a valid point, that there were no mention of a third party involved in these meetings and no one knows what was said and the influence that CT had on the RUF. Others would argue, why didn’t ECOWAS or the UN go to a more senior regional president like the Guinea President to mediate talks with the RUF? Further, someone can easily surmise that CT must have had some influence to broker deals with RUF. It is an open secret that he supported RUF. That being said, one can further conclude that because of his support for the RUF, CT got diamonds in exchange for arms which were used by the RUF to terrorize people, chop limbs and rape women. These are believe is the premise of the trail. In order for the prosecution to secure a guilty verdict based on evidence, they have to show that CT provided arms and what why, what was exchanged for the arms (diamonds)….the prosecution will get a guilty verdict b/c I think the trail is political and not evidentially based, it all circumstantial.

          CT testimony could give the prosecution fire power, he tends to talk more than he needs to, in such cases, he could incriminate himself. But lets continue observing and see what the prosecution has…with their “octopus”? Rupp knows how to bluff oh!

          But my friend, Elbee the prosecution has not proven these allegations; its my opinion that the defense has done a good job rebutting accusations.

  7. I hope the Indian Honorary Ambassador in Liberia will confirm that Taylor had all the Indian and Zambian troops released to him at Sierra Leone border after a long negotiation with RUF

    1. I am in total agreement with you, Eagle-eye and Elbee. You’ve really made my day! You see, Charlie “Cannibal” Taylor was delegated by his peers in ECOWAS and UN to negotiate the release of UN hostages because they knew the leverage he had over RUF. It sometimes take a thief to catch a thief. By the way, is Charlie using the evidence that ECOMOG peacemakers also traded arms for diamonds to justify his own act of doing so with RUF? We know that ECOMOG soldiers were not angels but are their nefarious activities a justification for the Head of the Sovereign State of Liberia to do same? It is noteworthy that Charlie is now beginning to unwittingly tell the truth and telling the whole world that through his prior dealings with ECOMOG, he knew how to sell arms to rebel groups. If he is unaware, he is also corroborating the evidence of prosecution witnesses that Charlie obtained the connivance of some ECOMOG peacemakers, through bribery, to have them turn a blind eye to the gun-running between him and RUF. The problem with Charlie and his defense team is that they suffer from a chronic and incurable verbal diarrhoea rendering them incapable of appreciating the full implications of some aspects of their case.

      1. Gyakabo,

        You have put Charles Taylor in a ” Damn if you do, Damn if you don’t situation” If he had not helped the UN negotiate the release of the peace keepers. You would be the same one saying it is because he was head of the RUF and told them not to release the peace keepers. Fortunately for Taylor fair minded judges will know you can not ask someone to negotiate and then say they are part of the problem. Is Bill Clinton infavor of North Korea because he went and negotiated the release of two American journalist ( Spies) recently ? No!

      2. WOW!!! GAYAKABO… is it so simple to make your day? I know it will make your day, if I said ELLEN and her financial thieves she took from america have stolen more money from the national bak again… HA>>HA>>ha..ha… But you what alot of will be made shame when the CHARLES TAYLOR NOT GUILTY VERDICT is passed very, very, soon.

        1. Noko5

          I am sorry to say, CT will not go free in this case….the trail is highly political….I predict 20 years!

        2. Cousin Noko5,
          I lean towards bnker….minimun will be 15 years. The world has spend so much money to send him home a HERO…..grossly, it will be injustice.

  8. Eagle eye and Elbee, don’t look for posibilities that things happen. look for evidence to justify the prosecution claims (facts). If we assume that Taylor did all of those things, then let all of us assume that he has wings to fly. And this is not the case

    1. Gemenie,
      You couldn’t have SUMMED it up and sweeter.

      Some come in here instead of looking at the evidences been presented which the judges are to go by, they throw in the kitchen sink along with the bathtub to suit their motive……SAD



  10. The statement by Stephen Rapp, the Chief Prosecutor of the Special Court of Sierra Leone, yesterday in a press conference at the Press Union Headquarters in Monrovia should give Charles Cannibal Taylor and his disciples sleepless nights. He said, “A surprise Octopus awaits Charles Taylor” during cross examination. I can’t wait for the cross examination of Charlie Cannibal Taylor, knowing that witnesses like him, who suffer from chronic and incurable verbal diarrhoea, is every lawyers dream for cross examination. Wow, the real drama is yet to begin!!!

    1. Gyakabo,

      Greetings my friend! I can’t wait to see what the prosecutor brings forward. myself…I hate to say this, but the prosecution has said a lot to things that are fallacies. I won’t put a lot in the stock in what Rupp says. Isn’t he the same gentleman who says that CT has $5B in foreign bank accounts? We still have not seen evidence of it. Rupp is what you might call a good salesman, he comes out with confidence and talks with authority, but when cornered, he frizzles. Rupp “talks a good game”. Its interesting you have confidence in this guy.

      In your thread, I noticed your description of CT is repetitive, why do you call him a “cannibal”? Is this based on facts or rumors? You know there is a saying, if you continue to tell a lie over and over, sooner or later you too will start to believe it, so would others. Let’s stick to the facts, OK!

      Like you, I believe evidence and facts are important, I am not insinuating that what CT is saying is all true or all lies. I too think the cross examination will be interesting, I’ve said and continues to say, CT tends to be long-winded, that might be his biggest obstacle and best opportunity for the prosecution team during cross examination. I like many will want to see if the prosecution will finally grow fangs or were they permanently removed. Thus far, they are a toothless bulldog. Bark and no bite….and I don’t think they have the knowledge, experience and expertise either to bite. These guys should be technocrats, right? Why don’t have they operated in such arena. They are being out played by the defense team.

      Honestly, I just want to see a fair trail…thus far, it has not been so.

    1. Hi Helen,

      I’m not sure what happened to the live stream today but will check. It may be the same problems that the SCSL have alerted us to — basically an overload of poeple trying to view the live stream at the same time. Can I suggest as a back-up? If the Special Court’s own live feeds freeze or otherwise give you troubles, go to the link from our home page (the button on the top right hand side of the page which says “watch live”) — it tends to have fewer problems because fewer people are trying to access it through our site. You might have more luck there. If you try it, do let me know if it works or if you have more problems.


  11. charles taylor’s smart man…i keep telling people..if they try to bring him down, they will all go down with him

  12. Tracey,

    while you are still at the court, could you please confer with the technical team as to why the transcript of August 13, 2009 was not posted. They did post the transcrips of August 17 and 18 but not the one from last thursday, August 13.


    1. Andrew — let me try to find out for you. I know they are also inquiring how to post the two transcripts from May 4 and 7 also (one of which covered the judges’ oral decision on Mr. Taylor’s motion for acquittal).


  13. Eagle-Eye, you need to be commended here for making things more clearer for our seemingly, blind bothers and sisters, who have chosen to argue blindly that this whole trial of taylor is a conspiracy by the West to get taylor! What they fail to realize is that taylor is going to pull any associates in the past he can get hold of in order to save his own neck. Don’t you already see how he is saying “no,I did not give money to Sam Bokarie, it was Obasanjo who gave me $50k to pass to Sam Bokarie and his thugs..” Now ECOMOG was dealing arms for daimonds and therefore he was not the only one! Do you not see how this man twists things to his imaginations? Doesn’t he sound liked a bedfellow with the RUF when he is intensively involved in almost every negotiations whether to release hostages or remove trouble makers and give them Liberian citizenship, according to him, to bring peace to Sierra Leone? Fellow countrymen, if you let taylor makes fool of you this last time, you will have history say how stupid you all were!

    1. J Fallah Menjor

      Taylor need not comment on ECOMOG gun-running whether in Liberia or Sierra Leone. The account you are referring to was introduce in evidence from a UN report that acknowledged that ECOMOG was gun-running in Sierra Leone.

      Granting of Liberian citizenship to Bocakarie and others is an issue but it is not in dispute. If there were accounts of their involvement in Sierra Leone while they were in Liberia that would be another matter. So far that has not been the issue. What the government of Liberia did in granting the citizenship can be challenge by Liberians if they so desire.

      On the account of the Obasanjo-money affair, taylor was asked if any other nation assisted with the temporal haven granted to the Bockarie group. Taylor replied that Obassanjo assisted and America agreed to assist but that it did not happen.

      I believe this is fair answer to fair questions. To take it out of context is surprisingly strange affair. I do not believe it would do us any good by being so polarisingly bias.

  14. very shortly , i am going to do piece ,on why these charges were brought against Taylor and not Tejan Kabbah or any member of the ECOMOG troops .

  15. Natelee Holloway case – Thrown out “lack of evidence.”
    From a reasonable point of view, many believe Joran van der Sloot and brothers Deepak and Satish Kaploe must be liable for her disappearance.

    O.J. Simpson – Acquitted, “The gloves did not fit.”
    From the public point of view, O.J. committed the crime.

    Evidence! Evidence! Evidence! Evidence! Evidence! Evidence is what matters. So far the defense has done a good job at this. Please prosecution; don’t make this a mockery of justice. Bring on the evidence.

      1. Well bnker; I understan exactly where you are coming from,especially in the situation of major power play like this one. But for me, I am optimistic that these judges will uphold their own integrity and will not trash their hard earn education and devalue the oath of impartiality. BELIEVE TAYLOR WILL BE FREE IN GODS’ NAME

        1. Well, I guess we shall see. You make a valid point, but there have been cases where the wrong person was imprison even in the states. I still trust the system, I guess the verdict will tell volumes. I say the case is political. I still predict 20 years..not life!

  16. Diamond Trade:

    According to the trasncript of August 18, 2009 The Defense disproved a major prosecution claim that RUF was channellin diamonds to Mr. Taylor. Prosecution witness TF1-567 testified that in 2000 he accompanied Sankoh to Mr. Taylor residence(White Flower) and following Sankoh’s meeting with Taylor, Sankoh disclosed to this individual that he Sankoh had just given a 45-karat diamond to Taylor and that Taylor was accordingly happy. This particular diamond transaction occurred in 2000.

    According to accounts Sankoh did not go to Liberia during the entire 2000.

    These are the types of evidence that the prosecution is relying upon in order to convict. The testimony itself is dubious. The witness was not privy to the discussion between Sankoh and Taylor is one existed. Yet he is now relaying information that Sankoh told him. How reliable and verifiable is this statement?

    Well the defense could just verified that the statement was not true because Sankoh did not step foot on Liberian soil in 2000 therefore the witness and information is not credible. BIG PROBLEM FOR THE PROSECUTION.

  17. Hey Mr Gyakaba

    These are learned people in this court OK and not simple minded individuals. What Mr.Taylor said can in know way influence this case. Secondly Mr.Taylor was trying to give the judges a clearer picture of what Ecomog was capable of doing. This answer was in relation to a United Nations report that Ecomog was in business with the RUF.
    Remember Mr. Taylor do not have to prove anything in this court OK. remember is the prosecutor and that is what they failed to do, because it never happen.
    Now Mr. Steven Rapp is saying that they will question Mr.Taylor about his human right record in Liberia what a fun.
    Hard time for the prosecutor

    1. Sorry Zobon, I just realized that you were not responding to my comment. Please disregard by last post.

  18. Dear readers,

    A quick note to say that I did not post some comments today because they targeted other readers who had commented on the site. If you did not see your comment posted, please do resubmit it but also, please make sure that it follows our one main rule for the site: that we focus on the issues and not on attacking each other. We will happily post it if it adheres to our policies for use of the site.

    With thanks,

  19. This case continue to prove the bullying of small countries by major world powers. Further , an interesting testimony from a prosecution witness which was read today in court proves that Taylor did not engaged in dubios activities. The prosection witness testified that Issa Sessay came to Liberia for PEACE and that Sessay did not take any weapons with him. This prosecution witness contradicted other prosecution witness who testified that Taylor gave Issa Sessay weapons on that very trip.

    The prosecution presented a deceptive case without recognizing the PEACE role that Taylor played in the region.. I would hope that this trickery on the part by the prosecution will lead the judges to ACQUIT.

    1. King Gray,

      Good entry. I salute you. I observed similar contracdiction in the prosecution’s case as pointed out by the Defense in the testimony of august 18, 2009. the issue was that the prosecution reported that Sankoh gave Taylor 45-karat diamond in 2000 and discussed the matter with one of his subordinates. The prosecution pointed out that Sankoh did not visit Liberia in all of 2000. I posted it today, so read it.

      We should commend the defense for its brilliant work. they are now speaking to the credibility of the prosecution’s witnesses, and therefore the prosecution’s case.

  20. No, Andrew I do not concur with what you said. It is not a fact that the charges against taylor are bogus because the final verdict has not been passed. Secondly, the judges did agreed with prosecution that in fact Taylor do have to answer to these charges. I think most people familiar with the RUF/NPFL relationship know this. So to say the charges are bogus means Taylor has nothing to answer to and I do not agree.

    Regarding your posting on diamonds, yes I am a Liberian and I know for sure that Liberia has no known discovery of diamonds anywhere near what Sierra Leone has. Wesua is all but depleted and Lofa Bridge diamond creeks are peanut compare to what you find Tongo or Koidu in Sierra Leone in both quantity and quality. So in short, no Taylor was never sitting a huge reserve of diamonds in Liberia but rather a small scale mining which he never actual engage in except for public show.

    Taylor was involve with sierra leone diamonds and that will be proven. What I don’t know is whether during the process he did commit any act of crimes. You see Taylor problems started when he lost the port of buchanan after operation octopus. His main source of quick income was gone. He moved his operation to San Pedro in CI, exporting Timbers mainly to southern Europe and Asia. The continous push by Ulimo made the San pedro operation costly and dangerous and many of the buyers left, so he turn to stones.

    Of course there is no crime if someone sold you something they want to sell. The only problem is, that something in the end did not belong to the person who sold/give it to him.

    The case against Taylor is much stronger than you guys are trying to make. Surely, you have seen some testimonies in open but there a lot in close sessions and at the end the judges accepted the prosecution arguement to be strong enough to carry on the trial. This is not over by no means yet. Taylor needs to get away from showmanship and focus on clearing himself, because he will not be taking anybody down with him this time. Most of the people or org. he is referring to have more credibility now than he is(that is not to say he cannot focus on them). It will not help him in the end.

    I wish him all the best but truth must prevail and I’m sure it will in the end.

  21. Again Eagle-Eye, I commend your ability to put emotions behind and redirect us to the main facts and reasons that wether or not we support taylor there are alledgations that taylor needs to prove beyond all reasonable doubts to get out of pententiary!
    All this rejoicing by supporters over taylor’s polishing ability of words and phrases is not the end! The end comes when he’s aquited of all 11 counts against him for his role in the conflicts in Sierra Leone! And even at that point, we will then commerce charges against taylor for crimes against the people of Liberia starting in December of 1989 through 2003! If you sopporters of taylor think this is a palaver-hut trial, please think again! Boy I am enjoying justice being done to all those who died and love ones they left behind!

    1. Menjor,

      Honestly, I don’t think CT will be acquitted, however, if he does, I am an advocate for war crimes court in Liberia. I am against the trail by SL not because I am a fan bc I am not. I think that SL should not have jurisdiction over Liberia. Besides, we have sufficient evidence to indict and imprison him and all others from Julu to Dweh, to CT to PYJ, from Sekou Conneh to Aisha Conneh, from G. Boley to whosoever…they all need to pay for their crimes. I also believe that if CT is to stand trail for acts in SL, so does many other leaders (it won’t happen though). Don’t you think there are striking parallels between CT alleged actions in SL and Bush’s war in Iraq?

  22. The funny thing abt goin got court is that even if you are guilty, you can still walk away a free man. All depends on the team of lawyers and how gud the prosecution case is… Right now charles taylor has a damn gud defense team and the case against him is very poor… Even is he was guilty, guess wat people, he will be a free man… Their case against him is weak…

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