Tags: liberia | war | taylor | trial

Liberia's Taylor Denies Using Child Soldiers

Wednesday, 27 January 2010 10:29 AM

Charles Taylor recruited and used children for military purposes in Liberia and it was therefore no surprise to him to learn that Sierra Leonean rebel forces were also using child soldiers during the West African country's 11-year conflict, prosecutors said Wednesday during the former Liberian president's cross-examination.

Lead prosecutor Brenda Hollis who is conducting Mr. Taylor's cross-examination went through evidence that Mr. Taylor's National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) rebel group used child soldiers during the Liberian conflict.

Mr. Taylor denied Ms. Hollis assertions. Ms. Hollis further suggested that because of Mr. Taylor's actions in using child soldiers in Liberia, it came as no surprise to him to know that child soldiers were being used by Sierra Leone's Revolutionary United Front (RUF) and the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC), an illegal junta regime that overthrew the elected government of Sierra Leone in 1997.

Mr. Taylor said that he had no idea of what the RUF and AFRC did in Sierra Leone.

"You yourself had armed children, some as young as eight years old," Ms. Hollis accused Mr. Taylor today.

"That is total nonsense. Every child that I held I put in an orphanage," Mr. Taylor responded.

To read full AllAfrica.com story — Go Here Now.

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Wednesday, 27 January 2010 10:29 AM
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