Tuesday, 20 May 2008

Ex-President Charles Taylor's trial

Charles Taylor's former vice president and successor, Moses Blah, has testified that he never saw Taylor engage in cannibalism or heard him order his fighters to eat their slain enemies. In testimony at Taylor's war crimes trial, Blah refused to rule out, however, that Taylor ate human flesh or ordered his troops to do so. In March, a witness told the Special Court for Sierra Leone that Taylor ordered fighters in his National Patriotic Front of Liberia to eat their enemies as a way of striking terror into his opponents. Joseph Marzah, who described himself as Taylor's chief of operations and head of a death squad before Taylor became president, said African peacekeepers and even United Nations personnel were killed and eaten on the battlefield by Taylor's militiamen. He also said he had sat with Taylor as he ate a human liver. Blah, who said his own cousin was killed and cannibalised in 1985 by forces loyal to former Liberian dictator Samuel Doe, told judges that he had "never heard such an order from Mr Taylor" but he could not vouch for every second of Taylor's time. Taylor has pleaded not guilty to murder, rape, torture and enlisting child soldiers during Sierra Leone's 10-year civil war, which ended in 2002. He is accused of pulling the rebels' strings from his headquarters in Liberia's capital, Monrovia. The Press Assocation.
I met Moses Blah at his house in Coco Cola Community, outside Monrovia in 2006. Jolly nice chap actually. He wanted Mercy ships to dig a well for him in his back garden. Olly

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