ECOMOG Mobilized ULIMO Fighters To Fight Against Charles Taylor in Liberia And To Attack AFRC/RUF In Sierra Leone, Former ULIMO Fighter Testifies

Charles Taylor’s 15th defense witness commenced his testimony today, telling the Special Court for Sierra Leone judges that Nigerian led West African peacekeepers mobilized several fighters to attack Mr. Taylor’s forces in Liberia as well as rebel forces in Sierra Leone during the conflicts in the West African region.

The witness, who is a Liberian by birth with Sierra Leonean parents, is testifying with partial protective measures and therefore identified only by Pseudonym Number DCT-190.  He told the court that he was a member of one of the rebel factions in Liberia – the United Liberation Movement for Democracy in Liberia, loyal to Roosevelt Johnson (ULIMO-J).

According to the witness, sometime in 1998 when skirmishes broke out between ULIMO-J leader Mr. Johnson and Mr. Taylor, Economic Community of West African States Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) peacekeepers provided ULIMO-J leaders with arms, ammunition, and trucks to attack and overthrow Mr. Taylor’s government in Liberia. The ULIMO-J fighters, the witness said, were transported from Duala to Camp Johnson Road in Monrovia to attack Mr. Taylor’s forces. The witness further stated that the objective of this attack was to attack the Barclay Training Center in Monrovia, secure the safety of the ULIMO-J leader Mr. Johnson, and overthrow Mr. Taylor’s government.

“The objective was to take Barclay Training Center in Monrovia with a view to obtaining arms and ammunition to overthrow Mr. Taylor,” the witness told the court today.

Asked by Mr. Taylor’s defense counsel Courtenay Griffiths whether the mission was successful, the witness told the court that “the mission was a failure, total failure because we were not able to take BTC and the next objective was to escort the leader (Mr. Johnson) to the American embassy.” He said that Mr. Johnson was escorted to the United States embassy.

The witness also told the court that within this period, ECOMOG peacekeepers planned to use ULIMO fighters in an operation code named “Operation Eagle,” which had a stated aim of capturing Mr. Taylor alive in Monrovia. He said that the plan was for ULIMO fighters to wear ECOMOG peacekeeping military uniforms and attack Mr. Taylor’s convoy near the James Spriggs airfield in Monrovia. This mission, the witness said, could not succeed because Mr. Taylor had an effective intelligence network that detected the plan. The witness said he was one of the ULIMO fighters engaged in implementing this mission.

Mr. Taylor in his testimony told the court about ECOMOG’s plans with ULIMO fighters to overthrow him while he was president of Liberia. This witness’s account today corroborated Mr. Taylor’s testimony.

Also today, the witness told the court that in 1997, the government of Sierra Leone and ECOMOG peacekeepers recruited UMILO ex-combatants and transported them in ECOMOG trucks with a mandate to fight against Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) and Revolutionary United Front (RUF) junta forces, who had overthrown the democratically elected government of Sierra Leone in May 1997. He said that the Liberian fighters were fully supported by ECOMOG forces during the attacks against AFRC/RUF forces.

“At Ricks Institute…we were being fed, taken care of by ECOMOG,” the witness told the court.

The witness added that ECOMOG directly provided them with arms and ammunition. Asked by Mr. Griffiths whether they underwent any training, the witness explained that “yes, because they knew we were fighters, so basically what they needed was effective command and control on the ground. That was basically what we trained at Ricks Institute.”

Mr. Taylor, who is on trial for providing support to RUF rebels in Sierra Leone through the supply of arms and ammunition, has told the court that several other players were responsible for the movement of fighting forces between Liberian and Sierra Leone because the region was already a volatile one due to the conflict.

The witness today, in giving the background to the formation of ULIMO, told the court that when Mr. Taylor’s rebel forces attacked Liberia in 1989, Liberians who ran to Sierra Leone later formed the Liberians United Democratic Forces (LUDF). This group, which according to the witness was supported by the government of Sierra Leone, later became ULIMO-J. The aim of this group, the witness said was first to help the government of Sierra Leone in their fight against the RUF and then to attack Mr. Taylor’s forces in Liberia. He said when they eventually entered Liberia, they received support from ECOMOG forces in their fight against Mr. Taylor.

“ECOMOG sent trucks for us and we were collected from Bomi Hills to Monrovia to assist them in Operation Octopus,” the witness said.  Operation Octopus was an operation launched by Mr. Taylor’s forces to capture Monrovia and finish the Liberian war. 

Mr. Taylor has testified that because of the government of Sierra Leone’s support to ULIMO, he had cause to establish a working relationship with the RUF in Sierra Leone in the early 1990s because they had a common enemy.

“I wanted to fight ULIMO in Sierra Leone in order to prevent fighting them in Liberia,” Mr. Taylor told the court in his previous testimony.

DCT-190’s testimony continues tomorrow.


  1. Bingo!!!! The goodness of this trial, we are learning of some of the INNER WORKINGS of key players in the game. ECOMOG was suppose to be NEUTRAL but we are now getting to know WHY Mr. Taylor didn’t trust her…

    And ECOMOG’s actions were BLESSED by the West…..and we wonder WHY only Mr. Taylor, former Head of State, is on trial when Pres. Kabbah is walking FREELY. JUSTICE???

    1. I don’t doubt for one second that ECOMOG fought against Taylor or supported a rebel group against Taylor after all we know ECOMOG assisted in the murder of Doe…nothing new but this what Taylorist willl deny even though Taylor himself admitted it. They (NPFL) took ECOMOG hostage and I believe they killed them too….NPFL was running amok and so The Ecomogs figure to get them under control they had to join forces with other idiots. Do I support that decision absolutly not. But let’s not act like ‘poor’ Taylor was a victim of a conspiracy with Ecomog. Taylor a madman was no victim the only victims were the innocent civilians…mano gio, krahn, mandingos etc, most recently Sierra Leone…that was caught in between this mess with these idiots…This still doesn’t change the truth of what Taylor did in Sierra Leone.And not all ecomog were a part…some of these men save my life and that of my siblings and I will forever remain grateful to them….

  2. The new witness;DCT-190 makes it clear enough about the equation between RUF and charles taylor unconsciously:”This group, which according to the witness was supported by the government of Sierra Leone, later became ULIMO-J. The aim of this group, the witness said was first to help the government of Sierra Leone in their fight against the RUF and then to attack Mr. Taylor’s forces in Liberia. He said when they eventually entered Liberia, they received support from ECOMOG forces in their fight against Mr. Taylor.” ULIMO-J had similar objective as ECOMOG and not with the aim of going to Sierra Leone for material gains as did taylor and his notorious NPFL bush rebels! Therefore, it shouldn’t be misconstrued that Taylor was a victim here, DCT190! Keep talking buddy, sooner or later the truth shall come out! I guarantee!

    1. Fallah,
      I’m glad that you know lately that ULIMO was established, trained, supplied and put into action against the peace loving people of Liberia by your government in Sierra Leone,but I get news for you. Just Sit tight in there brother, there are lot more things you need to know then pointing fingers at Mr. Taylor for the mess in your country. Please don’t throw stone if you live in a glass house. Open your eyes….

      Harris K Johnson

      1. Harry K. Johnson, I really don’t understand your statement;”Fallah,
        I’m glad that you know lately that ULIMO was established, trained, supplied and put into action against the peace loving people of Liberia by your government in Sierra Leone,but I get news for you.” However, let me tell you this once and for all: I am a Liberian but happened to gain a US Citizenship like anyone else and therefore my Government is the US government, and not Sierra Leone! Sectionalistic or tribalistic accusation is not the factor in this case, Johnson. What you should focus on is the “hot seat” taylor has made for himself through greed and cruelty to mankind, and is thus fighting to save his neck!

    2. Look Fallah,
      As Liberians who were in the country during the war will tell you that the ULIMO group from Sierra Leone didn’t just change to ULIMO-J. There were problems that led to that. The first one the death of the First Leader of ULIMO…. General Carpet, who were killed by forces loyal to Mr. Kromah who later became the Leader of ULIMO. Now the first thing that happened after was the that, ULIMO should have been represented first Council Government at which time, Mr. Thomas Zieah was selected to represent ULIMO in the but he was forcesively replace by Mr. Kromah. Mr. Kromah did put Dr. Muhamah Sheriff.
      That’s what led to ULIMO being , ULIMO- K and ULIMO- J. In that government, NPFL was represented by Mr. Isaac Musa as Vice president.
      So, it wasn’t all of the ULIMO Forces that came from Sierra Leone became ULIMO J, instead, the Krahn and the Sapo People in ULIMO became ULIMO- J while the Madengos in ULIMO became ULIMO- K.
      Like I have said before Fallah, I don’t think you are A liberian or if you are, then you wasn’t in Liberia during the war to know much about what really went on in Liberia during the war.

      1. Thank you Jacone. You really do not have to believe I am Liberian, just like I think you are really a Nigerian even though you continue to pose as Kpelle from Bong County!

        1. Fallah, a Nigerian man will not be called Kpannah! I have told you before, I am a born Liberian my born town is called Mulleh located in Careysburg, there where my father is from and my Mother is from Bensonville. I must tell you who I am. If you should go to Bensonville today, accross from the late William R. Tolbert Church, the land there belong to me and it given to me by late grand father. You can go now and ask, they will tell you my full name! Again my grandmother from my mother side of the family was a Tolbert as well and I told you this before.
          Or you can go on google and search Leemu conto, you will know who I am and you can read all about me! I am not scare for anyone to know my identity because I wasn’t involve with what happened in Liberia during war! So, Fallah, check and let me know what you think. On there, you will read about important family members I lost during the war in Liberia but that will not cause me to support false Justice!
          I will be getting marry on November 27, 2010 in Liberia, I therefore invite you to attend my wedding so you can know who I am in you don’t happened to find out who I am!

  3. Alpha,

    In paragraph I believe you made a mistake by saying Taylor’s forces attacked Liberia in 1999. You must mean in 1989. Please make the correction.

    1. Helen,
      Alpha is bend on convicting Mr. Taylor regardless…so he is doing his part..FORGIVE HIM.

      We were told ALL LIBERIANS fighting in SL were there because Mr. Taylor send them…but even the party that was to keep the peace was there to KILL also and we are seeking JUSTICE. Really, this court has done WONDERS for us all……

  4. The problem the prosecution is having is that you have members from all sides NPFL,RUF and now ULIMO testifying on behalf of Mr. Taylor. I would not be surprised if before this case is over a high ranking member of ECOMOG becomes a witness.

    1. Aki,
      Don’t read too much in to that. These fighters fought for multiple factions. They were rebels of fortune. They went anywhere a war was. They did not even have a cause. So because fighters from various factions have testified for Taylor says nothing. For all purposes, they could have been initial NPFL fighters and because these people fought without purpose and for loot and wealth, it is not impossible for their testimonies to be bought.

  5. I am very happy today to take part in your discussion,I been following this case and I see no time reason that we waste or time on this case.I thought this case was about Sierra leone,but I think is now about Liberia.I hope to see how it will end.

  6. Well people! if at this stage all anti-Taylor people cannot see the clear indication of iminent defeat in this case then all I can say is SORRY.

    I have always said that the defence in presenting their case are gradually building a huge reservoir of doubt in the prosecution case. Infact if this case were to end now there is no way the prosecution can get a conviction. by the time the defence concludes its case, even the very stubborn Brenda Hollis and the aggressively combative Nickolas Koumjian will have no option but to accept their defeat in this case.

  7. I wonder what the Taylor enemies will say again about this witness testimony. Yes, another former enemy of Mr. Taylor takes the stand to tell the world what the government of Sierra Leone and their rebel forces had against Mr. Taylor and the people of Liberia. God is surely with Mr. Taylor, he will be a Free State man soon.


    Harris K. Johnson

  8. What does the haters of Mr. Taylor have to say about this witness testimony? They believed that all the Liberians fighting Sierra Leone were sent by Mr. Taylor. This was part of the prosecution in which the prosecution stated that there were fighters in Sierra Leone speaking Liberian english; therefore, they were Liberians sent by Mr. Taylor

    1. Morris,

      If you are referring to President Taylor and his released from the Massachusetts jail its all over. Case closed.

      Prior President Taylor leaving the presidency between 1999 and 2000 the Liberian government filed a petition with the Superior court of Massachusetts to have the record expunged. In other words, the Liberia government asked the court of Massachusetts to get rid of the record completely. Said petition was granted. The offense was against the State, not the Federal government.

      1. Big B,
        I don’t know how to thank you…… these guys are feeling so inferior to Taylor until they want him dead or estinguished by any means. But with God above us all, their evil plans will never come to pass. Mr. Taylor will be set free and be warmly welcomed back in Liberia.

    2. So what is your point? is Charles Taylor a visitor to the Netherlands? or is he there on vacation or as a guest of the Dutch government? it was the SCSL that took Charles Taylor there and by the time they aquit him of the charges against him, it is their obligation to return him back to Liberia from which they took him.

    3. Morris Kanneh,
      Total Nonesence. We don’t need to know about extradition treaties between the USA and other countries. What this informatiom has to do with Sierraleone and Taylor. My brother , please allow us to deliberate the issue at hand. The issue between Taylor and the US government is seperate, distinct and let me sound this for you. DIFFERENT! DIFFERENT ! DIFFERENT ! ok…….

  9. Dear Harris — hello and nice to be in touch with you again after my long absense.

    I’m so sorry my first correspondence with you is to say that alas I cannot publish your post of 7:37am today because it focuses on another reader and not on the trial. However, I look forward to our continued conversation now that i am back on board.

    Very best,

  10. Folks,

    Let us not loose focus of what we did to our selves that seems to be etched in our currently national identity that has ruined our international reputation.

    Bottom line rationalization and rhetoric questions: why must we seek to blame others, i.e., ECOMOG, for our troubles or for the multiplicities of factions to the conflict when the blame rest with us, Liberians? Who started the carnage – ECOMOG or Taylor? Doe? Prince Johnson or ECOMOG?

    Who started the carnage on innocent Liberians – (a) Doe killing Tolbert and others and then turning his fury on innocent law abiding Gios and Manos of Nimba county or ECOMOG? (b) Taylor launching a bloody rebellion that targeted innocent Krahns and Mandingoes from Grand Gedeh county or was it ECOMOG who started our troubles?

    We, Liberians, MUST (seriously emphatic here – no kidding) hold ourselves with the highest culpability for our troubles, for we have the power to say NO. We have the power and authority to say no to killing our neighbors, brothers, and sisters and feeling good about it and even attempting to validate it; no to taking guns to fight; no to perpetuating unbridled corruption, nepotism, tribalism, and socio-economic or wealth disparity; no to external forces that seek to recruit us for subversive intentionality with the hope of giving us a false and dangerous shortcut to vocational glory, national stardom, and personal wealth accumulation; no to rigging elections and perpetuating unpopular regimes; no to greed, envy, vindictiveness; no to exclusion of others from benefiting from the national pie that opens doors to scholarships for students as well as the opening of more standardized, nationally accredited multi-degree granting universities to alleviate ignorance, stupidity, mediocrity, and poverty; no those things that make way for unsettling, disruptive, and bloody course; and no to systemic oppression and centralization of power.

    Indeed, we can say NO but regrettably too often history has proven we have enthusiastically responded YES even to the least or remotest external and internal promptings/urges. Now, saying YES sometimes have adverse ramifications for individual, communal, and national life – YES put us in the situation where we find ourselves today. We must accept the blame for what happened to our country and stop looking for ECOMOG, Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone, USA, etcetera to hold liable for our troubles.

    This blame game will take us nowhere…

    Besides, we must seek to rediscover who we really are individually and nationally but need to first remove the splinter (I am here drawing on a biblical text from Matthew 7:5) from our eyes to see clearly enough for such rediscovery to occur. This splinter has sat in our eyes for decades and if we continue to ignore this threatening splinter that is impairing our vision, we will not see clearly beyond blaming others for our troubles.

    1. @davenport
      well put…i could tell there was a spiritual base to your comment before you cited scripture.

  11. Grebo,
    Big B, Sam and Noko4 replies show that my point was well understood. You can ask them for further elaboration.

  12. Big B,
    You never stop to amaze me with your leap in logic and poor understanding of judicial processes.
    How can anyone well informed person writes ” prior President Taylor leaving the presidency between 1999 and 2000 the Liberian government filed a petition with the Superior court of Massachusetts to have the record expunged. In other words, the Liberia government asked the court of Massachusetts to get rid of the record completely. Said petition was granted. The offense was against the State, not the Federal government?”
    Do you think the state of Massachusetts is running a NPFL/NPRAG style judiciary system where record are expunged simply because Charles MacArthur Ghankay ordered so? You must be a big joker.

  13. Yes, Tracey,

    Your are right. My post was directed at Fallah because I have no other means to reply him whenever he say something about Mr. Taylor and his socalled supporters on this site you. I would appreciate were he to write me at and include his email address. I assure you i will take him head on through email exchange.



    1. Dear J Fallah Menjor – I received a comment from you at 1:36am today which alas I cannot post because it focusses on another reader. If you could reframe it slightly to keep it focussed on the trial, I will happily post it. I understand the point you are making — I wonder if there is another way to say it?
      Best, and thanks for your understanding in advance

      1. Harris, Iam not interested in holding debate with you because I do not fall in your age range nor do I want to come to that level. My purpose here is to follow taylor’s trial to the end, and based upon intellectual dialogue. I know this trial will leave its impact, both negative and positive, on many of us. However, to become personal and challenging others to a “showdown” in any forms, shows how emotionalism has taken over rationalism! Let’s focus on the trial of the century!

        1. fallah,

          What does age has to do with debate? I thought you were knowledgeable about Mr. Taylor allege involvement in Sierra Leone and you are prepare to discuss the issue anywhere possible. I wanted to take you head on in any kind of debate because you always sound like you have tons of evidence to prove Mr. Taylor wrong in this court. But since you have no ground to legally debate this case, I will leave you alone and focus my every and time to other matters.

          Harris K Johnson

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