The former president of Liberia and Special Court indictee Charles Taylor yesterday stated in his defence that he was not in support of the military intervention in Sierra Leone.
He told the court that the peace in Liberia was fragile and the military intervention was unilaterally conducted by Nigerian troops in ECOMOG. Taylor said he condemned it as it would have had a destructive effect in his country.
The agreement by ECOWAS the witness testified had not reached a point of force and that even the British Ambassador to the United Nations General John Weston also spoke strongly about the way Nigeria was going about military intervention to restore Tejan Kabbah.
Taylor also testified that ECOWAS wanted the UN to pass Resolution seven (7) which would have enabled them to use force in Sierra Leone but it was not passed. “ECOMOG which was mainly composed of Nigerians decided to use force” he said.
Charles Taylor further stated that member nations of ECOWAS were also not in support of the action of Nigerians since the action created an atmosphere of war through their bombing.
“I could not support ECOMOG because I did not have any interest in anything that will destabilize the peace in Sierra Leone” he said.
Between 1997 which was close to the indictment period the witness said he had nothing whatsoever in supporting the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) in Sierra Leone.
Testifying about his contact with Johnny Paul Koroma the leader of the AFRC he stated that on 3rd October 1997 he received a letter from him asking for his support but that he did not reply to the letter. A delegation he went on was also sent to him to know why Liberia was not in support of him but he did not respond to them adding that it is an indication of his non- support of the government.
By Betty Milton