19 June 2012

Liberia: Gov't Rejects Ethnic Security Hunt Claims

The Government of Liberia has categorically distanced itself from attempt by some unnamed individuals to drag it into ethnic political games to distort security measures taken against 10 suspects thought to be involved in the recent crossed border raid into neighboring Cote d'Ivoire, reportedly killing at least seven UN peacekeepers.

The Government of Liberia warns that while it supports the rights of any of its citizens to subscribe to views and exercise free speech, it will not condone the abuse of such free speech by anyone, who may want to infuse ethnicity into serious national security matter as the case in hand suggests.

In a statement issued in Monrovia Monday, the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism (MICAT) emphasized that government's action in issuing the alert against the 10 persons is well-intentioned; and not about a particular ethnic group as being rumored in some quarters.

In a very serious tone, government warns those putting ethnic face on the security measures being taken to secure Liberia's borders to desist as their actions have the propensity to ignite unnecessary ethic sentiments in the body politics of the country.

MICAT said government's alert is about consolidating peace in the sub-region and securing Liberia's border, adding that government gets no incentive by going after its citizens without any security intelligence.

Meanwhile, the Liberian Government has encouraged all of its citizens and residents to abide by the current security measures, while reemphasizing its call on those named in the alert to willingly turn themselves in to the police, as in the case with Abednego Zleh and Ofori Diah.

Government's recent alert on the 10 suspects followed the reported attack at the Liberia-Ivory Coast Border said to have been masterminded by Liberia mercenaries. At least seven United Nations (UN) Peace keepers from Niger on mission in the neighboring country were reportedly killed in the incident.

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