Liberia: Ex-Liberian Rebel Fate At Stake

Photo: NAC
Switzerland's Federal Criminal Court.
10 February 2015

The Swiss Supreme Court is expected to determine shortly whether or not allegations brought against former Liberian rebel commander, Alieu Kosiah, are substantial enough to prosecute him for war crimes.

A source hinted The NEWS that a team of investigators are in the country to talk with some survivals and visit areas, including Lofa, Bomi and Cape Mount counties where Kosiah operated as commander of ULIMO-K.

Our source said testimonies from survivals are significant in determining the fate of the former ULIMO commander. Already, a number of Liberian citizens in Switzerland have filed multiple complaints against Kosiah accusing him of atrocities and other violations.

In November 2014, Switzerland arrested Kosiah based on complaints by several Liberians that he allegedly participated in civilian massacres during the country's first civil war in the 1990s.

He was arrested in Bern, Switzerland where he was living, said Morisara Doumbia, head of an organization for Liberians living in Switzerland.

Kosiah's arrest makes Switzerland the second European country in recent time to have arrested a Liberian accused of atrocities during Liberia's two civil wars, which spanned 14 years and are said to have killed more than 250,000 people.

In September, Belgium arrested Martina Johnson, former head of Charles Taylor's heavy artillery unit. Johnson is the first Liberian charged with international crimes for the first war.

Taylor is serving a 50-year sentence in Britain for war crimes and crimes against humanity he committed during Sierra Leone's civil war.

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