The transcripts of the trial of Charles Taylor, former President of Liberia. More…

  • Good morning, Mr Witness.

  • Good morning, sir.

  • We shall continue with your testimony this morning. We will pick up from where we left off yesterday with photographs. May I ask that the witness be provided with the photographs, or the particular one that he was looking at just before the break yesterday and this was P0005004. Mr Witness, you recall being shown this photograph yesterday? Do you recall?

  • Yes, sir.

  • And you were asked to indicate on it the Sierra Leoneans who took part in the training for the platoon commanders course. Is that correct?

  • And do you recall making the markings on it that we have now?

  • Were these all the Sierra Leoneans who took part in the course?

  • Are there others who took part in the course that are not featured in the photograph?

  • Who are they?

  • Babah Tarawally is not in this photograph and Mohamed Barrie is also not in this picture.

  • Mr Bangura, I don't recall, did the witness read the names of these people into the record, or did he just write.

  • No, he did not, your Honour, to my recollection.

  • I think we should have them read.

  • Mr Witness, can you indicate, or tell the Court, from what you have marked who the persons are that took part in the training from what you have marked on the photograph and just give a description of where the positions are of these persons that you've marked. Maybe you should start with yourself.

  • Yes, sir. The first one here is myself. The second --

  • Just pause, Mr Witness. When you say "The first one here", where are you in the photograph? Are you in the first row, the second row or the third row?

  • From the right on the picture it's the first row. That's my photo.

  • Mr Bangura, could I put on record that the witness is using a pen to indicate the person who is at the extreme right on the front row.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Can you give - can you tell us who the others are, the next person marked there?

  • Yes, sir, the third person in the second row from the right is Davison Conteh.

  • I will record that the witness used a pen to indicate the person who is third from the right in the middle or second row of the photograph.

  • Thank you, your Honour.

  • And of course the spelling appropriately is D-A-V-I-S-O-N.

  • Yes, your Honour, that is the --

  • It is not spelt that way on the transcript.

  • That is the witness's version:

  • And who is the next person there?

  • Next to Davison Conteh to his right in the middle row is Kemokai Kallon.

  • Again, I will put on record that the witness is using a pen to indicate the fourth person from the right on the middle or second row of the group in the photograph.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, if I recall you did say yesterday that this photograph was taken at some location in Monrovia. Is that correct?

  • In your earlier testimony you said that the training you underwent for this course was at CARI, a facility called CARI, at Suakoko Bong County. Do you recall that?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Mr Bangura, Kemokai is K-E-M-O-K-A-I according to the witness.

  • I am sorry to keep interrupting, but it is important to get the spellings in the record.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Why was this photograph taken at a different location from where you undertook the training?

  • After our graduation all the official officers that graduated decided to come together to have a party at one of the hotels at Old Road called Kailondo, so only a few of us were present for this particular photo. We just came together for remembrance to have one of these photos.

  • Now after that training, was any official ceremony held apart from this party that you've mentioned? Was any official ceremony held at all for you, the graduates?

  • What was that ceremony?

  • We had a meeting with President Taylor in his residence, sir.

  • Who had this meeting with President Taylor?

  • We, the officers who graduated from this course, had this meeting with President Taylor.

  • And when you say at his residence, where are you referring to?

  • I am referring to his living quarters, I mean White Flower, in his living room.

  • Were you led by anyone to this meeting with President Taylor?

  • Your Honour, my attention is being called to what came up in the translation from the witness's answer about where the meeting took place. It's in the living room.

  • I'm fairly sure I heard the interpreter say "living room", no?

  • Yes, your Honour. Perhaps "living room" and another word before "living room".

  • I see. Maybe in the circumstances clarify it with the witness.

  • Mr Witness, you said in the living room was where you met with Mr Taylor, in the living room of his residence at White House. Is that correct?

  • No, sir, I said his living quarters. When I talked about his quarters I was referring to his house.

  • As far as I understand it parlour, that is right.

  • Mr Witness, what did you mean by parlour? You used the word "parlour", isn't it?

  • This is the official area in his house where he held meetings with officers.

  • Your Honours, we will leave it there:

  • I had asked you, Mr Witness, whether you were led by anyone to this meeting with Mr Taylor.

  • Who led you to the meeting?

  • At this time, sir, General Momoh Gibba, who was the head of the ATU, led us to that meeting, sir.

  • And about what time was this?

  • That was after our graduation from this course, sir.

  • When I say what time, I'm asking about year and month?

  • This time it was in late 2000.

  • Thank you. During that meeting do you recall what happened?

  • Please tell the Court.

  • As we were told, they said this meeting was the usual routine, you know, by Charles Taylor with the officers who graduated from this course. They said even the first batch that graduated before us also had a meeting with him, you know? So when we had the meeting he welcomed us and appreciated our efforts, but on that day he just expressed more concern about the indiscipline he said he was hearing about the ATU soldiers that were on deployment. He said he regretted the kind of courses the white instructors were giving to us. He was surprised, I mean, to hear that the ATU who have graduated from this course were still causing problems on the street, so he started asking the officers to really bring forward reasons for this indiscipline.

    To cut matters short on that day individual officers brought up their own reasons and suggestions, but all the blame went to Bulldog for being responsible for all those. I can remember my own point on that day. When I rose up in the meeting I said one of the points that was responsible for this was that - was the idea that there was no "I" in the team.

  • Mr Witness, if you would go a bit slower. I believe the interpreter is finding it difficult to follow your testimony.

  • Yes, sir. Can I continue, sir?

  • Well, from the meeting on that day I rose up and brought up my own point. I said there was one point that was causing the indiscipline among the soldiers in the ATU at that time. I said the slogan that we always went with was, "There is no 'I' in team." I said that was causing a serious problem. I said where a group of soldiers were assigned, when one soldier causes a problem all the rest of the soldiers are punished because of that individual's behaviour. I said some of our friend soldiers were taking advantage of this to do it because they were not going to be bear the consequences alone, so I suggested that whenever a soldier causes a problem that individual should bear the penalty for that particular behaviour. So I can remember that being my own point on that day in that meeting.

  • Thank you, Mr Witness. Your Honours, may I at this point move that the photograph be marked for identification.

  • This is a photograph showing a group of male persons in three rows, I think there's one female person in the midst of them, and it becomes MFI-4, is it, Madam Court Attendant?

  • That is correct, your Honour.

  • Mr Witness, in your testimony yesterday you also talked about going through the platoon commanders course which prepared you or after which you earned the rank of a captain. Do you recall that?

  • I'm sorry, I meant company commander. Company commander. Company commanders course. We just dealt with platoon commander course. Do you recall that?

  • Yes, sir.

  • And that prepared you for promotion to the rank of captain. Do you recall that?

  • At the end of that course, did you take any photograph for remembrance?

  • Your Honours, may the witness be shown photograph number P0005005:

  • Mr Witness, you've seen the photograph put up on the projector there?

  • What photograph is that?

  • This is one of the photographs we took during - after our graduation from the company commander course at Camp Schefflein, sir.

  • About what time was this photograph taken?

  • This photograph was taken in early 2002.

  • Now, in your testimony yesterday you did say that on this course also you had Sierra Leoneans from the RUF who took part in it. Do you recall that?

  • Now can you say who you recognise in this photograph who were Sierra Leoneans and former members of the RUF?

  • Please just indicate for now and then I shall ask you to do something else later.

  • From the photograph, the first row here, from the right of the first row in the picture, the second person is me.

  • Yes. Do you recognise any other person there who is Sierra Leonean and a member of the RUF?

  • Please go on and identify that person.

  • The first person in the second row - I mean the middle row is Babah Tarawally.

  • The seventh person from the right from the back row is Davison Conteh.

  • Are they the only ones you recognise?

  • The 11th person in the back row from the right is Kemokai Kallon.

  • Can I ask you, like you did with the other photograph, to use your pen and circle the head of the persons you have identified in the photograph and then draw a line from that and write their names.

  • Mr Bangura, whilst the witness is doing that perhaps you could check the spellings on the record, especially the name of Babah Tarawally. Please have it spelt properly.

  • The witness has spelt Tarawally with a "Y" at the end. Babah is B-A-B-A-H.

  • The witness has spelt it with an "H" at the end.

  • Your Honours, if I understand you rightly, the versions of spelling which the witness has used is what the Court wishes that we should have on the record. That's it:

  • Mr Witness, are you done with this exercise? Have you written the names against the persons that you recognise?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Can you just, for the record, say who are the persons you have identified in the photograph?

  • The people I have just marked here were all those from Sierra Leone who crossed with Sam Bockarie to Liberia and joined the ATU.

  • Just go on, Mr Witness, and say who is the first person there you've marked, starting with yourself, and then to the end.

  • He's already given the names, Mr Bangura. There's no need to repeat them.

  • I take the point, your Honour. If the records already reflect those markings, your Honour, may I move that the photograph be marked for identification.

  • Yes. This is a photograph as marked and identified by the witness. It shows male persons and one female person in three rows. It becomes MFI-5.

  • Your Honours, there are two more photographs to deal with. May the witness be shown photograph ending 006:

  • Mr Witness, do you see the photograph which has been shown to you?

  • Who do you recognise in that photograph?

  • This is my photo, sir, during - at the time that I graduated as a captain, sir.

  • Where was this photograph taken?

  • This photograph was taken right in front of the Executive Mansion, at the intersection facing the University of Liberia.

  • Did you have something to do in this area that you took the photograph at that time?

  • What affairs did you have to do in this particular area at that time?

  • This was the time that I was assigned at the 1st Battalion headquarters as a company commander to protect the surroundings of the Executive Mansion, sir.

  • Can you describe the outfit that you are wearing in this photograph?

  • What is that outfit?

  • This uniform was an ATU official uniform, a tiger stripe.

  • Could you just write your name against that photograph. Your Honours, may I move that the photograph marked P0005006 --

  • I wonder if my learned friend could give us a time frame for that particular photograph.

  • Mr Witness, you have said that this was after your graduation as a captain. Can you be precise about the time exactly that you took this photograph?

  • This was in late 2002, sir, when I was withdrawn from fighting at the Bopolu target.

  • Your Honours, I again move that the photograph marked P0005006 be marked for identification.

  • This is a photograph showing one individual who the witness has identified and marked with his own name as himself, it becomes MFI-6.

  • Can the witness be shown 007, a photograph ending 007:

  • Now, do you see that photograph that is being shown to you?

  • Who do you recognise in the photograph?

  • I recognise myself and the ATU 1st Battalion at that time was in control during the armed forces parade.

  • Now, just to be clear, you say you recognise yourself and you say "and the ATU 1st Battalion". What do you mean?

  • This was one of the companies in the 1st Battalion that I and my company commander at that time were controlling when we went for special drill exercise to participate in the armed forces parade.

  • Now, in this picture what occasion was this that it depicts? What occasion was this?

  • This occasion was the day of the armed forces parade. Armed forces day, I mean, the Republic of Liberia.

  • What date was that?

  • Well, the date we took this picture I am seeing here was on 12 February 2001.

  • And the outfit you're wearing there, what outfit is that?

  • This uniform, the tiger stripe suit I'm wearing, was the official uniform for the ATU in Liberia at that time.

  • And what are you carrying in the photograph?

  • I am carrying one of the flags for the ATU.

  • Thank you. Your Honours, I respectfully move that this photograph be - well, just before that:

  • Mr Witness, you have said that this is your photograph. Can you indicate - write your name by the photograph, please.

    Your Honours, may I respectfully move that the photograph be marked for identification?

  • This is a photograph showing a male person holding a flag with several other people in the background. The witness has marked and identified it as himself in the foreground. It becomes MFI-7.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, I will just take you through a few issues that we discussed in your testimony yesterday before we pick up fully from where we left off. Now yesterday in your testimony you said that Joe Tuah, or rather let me put it another way. You said that you were asked by Sam Bockarie at one time during 1998 to take to him a satellite phone, do you recall that, at Dawa?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Now, I will just read for you from the transcript what came out in your testimony. Your Honours, I'm reading from page 13476, lines 19 through to 29. The question at line 19 was, "When was it that you met him at Dawa?", and your answer was:

    "At one time Sam Bockarie left to go to Dawa and he left one of his satellite phones. There was a satellite phone that opens like a laptop computer. Then he called me to carry it on a motorbike and I did so. That was when I met him with Sam Bockarie, so I believe that that was the second time of seeing him in Monrovia at that time."

    Then I asked you, "Do you recall what year this was?", and then you say, "When he came finally we asked him to tell us exactly what was going on and he tried to convince us." I think I asked you further to tell the year and you said that it was between '98 and '99. Now about the satellite phone itself, when you took it to Sam Bockarie do you know whether he did anything with it?

  • No, sir, I only carried it and returned to my assignment area.

  • Do you know why Joe Tuah had come to Dawa where he was with Sam Bockarie at the time you took the satellite phone?

  • Also in your testimony yesterday you said that Sam Bockarie was seen most times with Charles Taylor and you gave an example like when he was visiting his village at Arthington. Do you recall that?

  • Do you know why he was most times with Sam Bockarie - sorry, with Charles Taylor?

  • Why was he with Charles Taylor at those times?

  • The only point I knew at that time was that he was in Liberia in the care of Charles Taylor.

  • When you say "in the care of Charles Taylor", can you explain that further?

  • Yes, sir. Before we could even enter Monrovia in late 1999, you know, he also expressed that if they were going to Charles Taylor - that they were going to Charles Taylor, he and Foday Sankoh, to talk over matters. I believed that his presence in Monrovia at that time his host was Charles Taylor.

  • Do you know whether he had any duties during those times that he was with Charles Taylor?

  • I knew about no official duty at that time, sir.

  • Thank you. Now, you mentioned that there was another batch of Sierra Leoneans who were of the RUF who got trained at Gbatala after your group. Do you recall that?

  • Are you able to tell us the number of Sierra Leoneans who were in that second group that got trained at Gbatala?

  • Now Gbatala base itself, were you quite familiar with its surroundings?

  • Are you able to give this Court some description of what the base looked like?

  • Please do.

  • First of all this Gbatala base, the name Gbatala base, the name on one of the villages close to where the base was opened, the name Gbatala. The base was on the highway leading from Monrovia to Gbarnga, and when you were travelling on this highway from Gbarnga to Monrovia on your left-hand side after the village Gbatala you had the Gbatala base on the left-hand side on top of a hill. On the Gbatala base itself, we generally called at that time, it was divided into three areas.

  • What were these three areas?

  • The first area of the base which was almost close to the highway of Monrovia - Gbarnga-Monrovia Highway, it was there that they had good buildings, I mean the living quarters. It was there that the administration of the base was run. And behind the hill there was a forest between the living quarters and another part of the base, you know, where they had one - the shooting range where we practised firing and they had a detention area there, a jail that was made of a hole. Then beyond the second area that I have just mentioned, about almost a mile distance towards another mountain in the forest, they had a small settlement which at that time we called Up the Mount. You know, in Liberian English it meant up the mountain. We also had activities there concerning the base.

  • Mr Witness, you have said that the - in the second part that you described you talked about a hole. You said they would have some - they had detention there which was like a hole. Can you describe that further?

  • Yes, sir, this detention that I'm referring to here was not like any normal jailhouse. There were holes that were dug in the ground approximately about five to six feet. They had a wire fence, a steel rod gate fixed to close it and over the holes they had a small hut built around the jailhouse.

  • In which part of these three areas were you based during your training?

  • All these areas were used during the training, but to make it clear to you when we entered on the base initially the area I described about a mile distance from the area where this detention area was was where they first took us for almost two weeks. This area was more or less they said an introductory part of the training that, you know, whenever you were strong enough to recover from that particular area then you were fit enough to go to the white instructors for training. This area I'm referring to was mainly controlled by the Liberian instructors, who were assistant instructors to these white instructors.

    There was no proper administration run here. Everything here was like a serious punishment. They said they wanted you to be able to withstand endurance. They called it at the time zero. They said they want to zero you. When you were lucky you will survive it, then they will bring you back to where I mentioned as the area of administration. That was the quarters close to the highway where they had the houses. That was where the administration was run. Feeding and sleeping quarters, everything was there.

    The second area where they had this hole that I'm talking about as one of the detention areas, this area was used mainly for our trainings, especially practising combat tactics, shooting exercises. These were the areas, you know? This area was used for that.

  • Thank you, Mr Witness. Now yesterday in your testimony you said that you were met by Joe Tuah, do you recall, and he said to you that you were to go - instead of going to Gbarnga, where all the other Sierra Leoneans were supposed to go, you and your group were to go somewhere else. Do you recall?

  • And that place was where?

  • Ivory Coast, sir.

  • And your testimony is that you boarded an aircraft at the RIA, that's the Roberts International Airfield, which took you to Ouagadougou, is that correct?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Now, how many of you boarded this flight to go to Ouagadougou?

  • On that particular trip we were 21 including Joe Tuah himself, sir.

  • Did Joe Tuah tell you on whose instructions you were going on this flight to Ouagadougou?

  • He only referred to Benjamin Yeaten at that time, sir.

  • And did he say exactly where you were going to?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Where did he say you were going to?

  • He said Sam Bockarie was already in Ivory Coast and that some other people from Liberia had already joined him in Ivory Coast, so he was also expecting us and more people to join him in Ivory Coast.

  • Can you describe what happened when you arrived at Ouagadougou?

  • After almost an hour's flight, when we finally landed at the airport I never knew where we landed at that time, but we left on the plane - because only 21 of us were at the back of the plane, with the exception of the pilots who were piloting the plane. So Joe Tuah alighted from the plane and the pilot also. I was looking through the window of the plane and they walked to the securities who were in uniform standing. They were discussing something I did not know, but while we were looking at the sign boards along the airport I saw the spelling of Ouagadougou airport, so I knew that we were in Burkina Faso.

    So a few minutes later Joe Tuah returned to the plane and said that they were waiting for a bus to come and we will get into the bus, and within that period a bus came with only the driver in it. When we alighted from the plane, about two steps from the plane we were in the bus. We all got into the bus and Joe Tuah stayed behind. Then the driver drove us through Ouagadougou until we finally continued our journey throughout the day until midnight. We crossed the border. According to the description that was made to us later, we crossed closer to the Mali-Burkina-Ivory Coast borders. One of the big towns along the border that night that we stopped at was Korhogo.

  • Mr Bangura, before we go further into this description the answer to the question about "on whose instructions you were sent", the witness said, "He only referred to Benjamin Yeaten." I don't know whether the reference is an instruction, or what it means, "referred to". Please clarify that.

  • Mr Witness, I asked you earlier whether you knew on whose instructions you were being sent to Ouagadougou and the answer you gave is not very clear. Can you say again whose instructions Joe Tuah was acting on?

  • Yes, sir. As I told you, you know, the name mentioned on that particular operation on that day, directly from Joe Tuah, was that he said chief Benjamin Yeaten. At that particular time instructions like those do not personally come from Benjamin Yeaten at that time. It must be approved by Charles Taylor, especially in terms of our group, our group's movement, because over two weeks when that order was published that we should go to Gbarnga, we were getting these rumours of that war in the Ivory Coast, of Sam Bockarie's involvement, but officially at that time we had not - I was not officially informed by an officer like this that this was what was going to happen.

  • It doesn't answer the question, but it appears that the witness doesn't know the answer to your question perhaps.

  • I will move on, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, just before we go on to describe what happened along the journey, how did you travel from RIA in Liberia to Burkina Faso on this flight? Was this a normal travel where you packed and prepared to leave like you travel normally?

  • No, sir.

  • Exactly how did you travel?

  • Well, our preparation was like, you know, like the way when they say we were going to fight somewhere. The preparation was like that because we were not officially dressed like travellers. We were just like, you know, those days when rebels were going to fight somewhere. That was the sort of preparation. I mean that was the sort of situation we were in, because we were not even prepared for the trip at that particular time.

  • You yourself, did you pack any things that you were carrying with you?

  • You said that you travelled through Burkina Faso from the airport to a point where you went close to the border, the Mali border. Is that correct?

  • And where did you enter?

  • Well, when we crossed the border where the rebel leaders of the Ivorians, the way they identified themselves to us at that time - when they received us, the big town we slept that particular night was Korhogo, Korhogo.

  • Mr Bangura, does the witness know this himself, or did somebody else tell him? I notice that earlier he used these words, "We crossed the border. According to the description that was made to us later". Now, did somebody describe where he crossed, or does he remember crossing at a certain point himself? And I'd be interested to know who gave that description to him of where he crossed the border.

  • I will get the witness to say, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, in talking about the locations where you went through on your journey from the airport, you have mentioned two names already and you said in the case of one of them you knew - your Honour, I'm trying to find --

  • I'll give you the reference from which I was quoting. At least on my computer it's page 22, from line 18 to line 22.

  • Mr Witness, you have said that during the course of the journey, in your own words, you said, "Then the driver drove us through Ouagadougou until we finally" - crossed the border --

  • Yes, sir.

  • "We continued on the journey throughout the day until midnight. We crossed the border. According to the description that was made to us later, we crossed closer to the Mali-Burkina-Ivory Coast border. One of the big towns along the border that night we stopped was", and you gave a name. What's the name of that big town?

  • The big town in Ivory Coast where we slept and that morning where we slept until daybreak, because we travelled throughout the night, was Korhogo.

  • Could we have a spelling, please, for that town.

  • Yes, I am just trying to give the spelling and then get to the point that Justice Lussick raised.

  • Perhaps the witness knows how to spell it. Can you spell the name of the town, Mr Witness?

  • I don't know the actual spelling. It's a French word.

  • It's K-O-R-H-O-G-O:

  • Now, Mr Witness, how did you know the name of this town?

  • When we arrived there we spent two nights and amongst the commanders of the Ivorian rebels that we met there was one among them who took care of our affairs for that two nights. He was speaking English, so he described the area to us and even in Korhogo, the area where we were kept for those two nights, was a kind of restaurant, so we saw some of the descriptions on the houses as Korhogo.

  • Mr Witness, when you crossed into the Ivory Coast at this time were you received by anybody?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Were you received by anybody?

  • As I told you, that night when we had driven for the whole day up to that point, we met with the rebels of that particular area, the Ivorians, as they were introduced to us. They received us into Ivory Coast where we finally arrived at Korhogo.

  • Where did they receive you?

  • When we stopped at the point, they described the area as being the border between Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast.

  • And the question is where did they receive you?

  • I cannot remember the name of the town that night actually because I was not informed about the name of the town, but I can only remember where we finally slept until morning.

  • And was that the point that you were met by the rebels from the Ivory Coast?

  • The Ivorian rebels, we met with them right at the border of Ivory Coast. They took us to this Korhogo that I'm referring to.

  • You said you spent a couple of days at Korhogo.

  • Yes, sir, we spent just two nights in Korhogo.

  • And after that did anything happen?

  • Yes, sir. That morning when we arrived, you know, I was connected to Sam Bockarie through a Thuraya phone so as to talk to Sam Bockarie for him to build confidence that he was in Ivory Coast.

  • It's not clear what you mean. You said you were connected on some phone to talk to Sam Bockarie to build confidence. It's not very clear. Can you explain that again?

  • Yes, sir. One of the rebel commanders who was taking care of us in the hotel where we were based, he brought his Thuraya phone and he said Sam Bockarie wanted to talk to those who came from Liberia. So we spoke to him on the Thuraya phone.

  • What is a Thuraya phone?

  • Well, the - a Thuraya phone could be described as a kind of satellite phone with a long antenna at that time and that was what was brought to us. The size was almost like a walkie-talkie Motorola communication set.

  • What discussions did you have with Sam Bockarie?

  • Well at that particular point he just welcomed us and gave us confidence that he was there and that he was expecting us to meet him that time at Seguela, because he was in one of the towns at that time called Seguela.

  • Are you able to spell Seguela?

  • No, sir, I don't know the actual spelling of that town.

  • Your Honours, Seguela is S-E-G-U-E-L-A.

  • Did you say G-U-E-L-A?

  • Your Honours, before we move on I'm intrigued to know that Mr Bangura can spell this town Seguela. Unless I have missed something there is nothing at all in the disclosure about this, where they went in Burkina Faso, where they went in Cote d'Ivoire. There's a very small amount indeed of information.

    Now it appears on the face of it that my learned friend - unless I've missed it and I accept that I'm fallible and might have done. It appears on the face of it that there is more material that this witness has - information this witness has given to the Prosecution that we have not been given any advanced indication of at all and I wonder if my assumption is correct.

  • Mr Bangura, you have heard Mr Munyard on a question of disclosure.

  • Your Honours, there is certainly material provided to the Defence about the fact that the witness along with others went to Ivory Coast and they were involved in activities in Ivory Coast. Your Honours, the extent of the movement in the Ivory Coast is not specifically laid out in the material provided, but there is indeed material which indicates that they were in the Ivory Coast over a certain period and I am just going to go back to what we have provided to the Defence.

  • Mr Munyard seems to be saying that, if you have sufficient detail to be able to spell these places, then you must have that information before you and he's suggesting that that has not been disclosed.

  • Your Honours, I'm merely being - I'm merely referring to spellings on a map which has been provided already to the Court and to Defence and this is a map which the witness will in due course be making indications on.

  • Mr Munyard, first of all counsel for the Prosecution speaks of a map and some information given to you. Does that satisfy the question you have raised? Do you (a) have the map and (b) the information he is referring to?

  • Your Honour, I'll look to see if in the big map book that the Prosecution themselves were so reluctant to use the other day does in fact have these towns on it, but if they do then clearly this witness on the face of it has been taken through the map. Why else is my learned friend able to go straight to these towns and so on and so forth unless this has been gone through with this witness? There's a handful of paragraphs - a handful might be an exaggeration - about what this witness was doing in Cote d'Ivoire and indeed Burkina Faso. Burkina Faso amounts to a handful of lines, not even paragraphs.

    I'm simply enquiring at this stage, in the light of the way this examination-in-chief is proceeding, as to whether or not there is more detail that the Prosecution have obtained prior to this testimony from this witness that they haven't yet disclosed to us. In the meantime, I'm happy for it to proceed and I will dig out the map book and no doubt my learned friend will give us the reference to the map that he's talking about. I don't want to hold things up, but I am putting down a marker.

  • Mr Bangura, if I may ask, I personally am curious one for the relevance of this line of evidence, but what might assist us to understand and appreciate better is giving us time frames when were they in Burkina, when were they in Ouagadougou, et cetera. We are looking at the indictment in terms of time frames and it helps us to appreciate the relevance of your evidence when it's put in context. We are having to remind you every now and then "Give us time frames" and we shouldn't need to do that.

  • Your Honours, I will get the witness to help us with the time that some of these events occurred.

  • I agree with Justice Sebutinde that this time is necessary. However, we have not completely disposed of Mr Munyard's matter. It's now on hold whilst counsel for the Prosecution checks their records and compares it to what has been disclosed, but please proceed with the examination-in-chief.

  • Your Honours, my learned friend asked about the map that I was referring to and this map is M7 in the map book.

  • M7 in the map book. That's the map I'm looking at.

  • Please continue and deal with the time matter as well, Mr Bangura.

  • Mr Witness, when did you leave RIA, Liberia, for Ouagadougou on this flight?

  • I can remember that it was in December 2002.

  • And at the time when you entered into Ivory Coast, when was that?

  • Are you talking about the hours, sir?

  • Was it still in December when you entered into Ivory Coast? When you said December 2002, that's a little wide.

  • Was it still in December 2002 when you entered into the Ivory Coast?

  • I'm sorry to interrupt again. I really don't want to hold things up, but I've been referred to a map M7 which is Cote d'Ivoire and I can't see Seguela marked anywhere near the Burkina Faso-Mali-Cote d'Ivoire border. I'm wondering --

  • The place near the border was Korhogo.

  • He's referred to Seguela. That's when I rose and made the objection.

  • And then subsequently Seguela.

  • Your Honour, Seguela is on that map and it's a little way down. It's more towards the west.

  • Oh, yes, I've got it now. I'm sorry, I was working on the basis this was on the border. It's a long way down. I've seen it now. I'm grateful.

  • Mr Witness, without going into too much detail, are you able to tell the Court what particular areas you were at in the Ivory Coast during this period? Well just before that, you said you had a conversation with Sam Bockarie on the phone and you - and the purport of that conversation was that you would meet him at Seguela when you arrived there. Is that correct?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Did you go to Seguela?

  • And did you meet Sam Bockarie there?

  • How long after the conversation with Sam Bockarie on the phone did you go to Seguela?

  • We left Korhogo the following day to join Sam Bockarie in Seguela.

  • And at this time are we still within December of 2002?

  • Now, when you got to Seguela did anything happen there?

  • Yes, sir, we were welcomed by Sam Bockarie and the others whom we had met earlier.

  • When you say the others whom you had met earlier, who were these others that you had met earlier?

  • At that time I came to know that some other military personnel from the Charles Taylor government had been there before with Sam Bockarie.

  • Who were these military personnel that you talk about?

  • I can remember one T Zimmi. I think he was a Gio man. That is a Gio name. We used to pronounce it T Zimmi. He said he was an MP commander in the Armed Forces of Liberia.

  • Are you able to spell that name for the Court?

  • Yes, sir. Even - I don't even know whether I was accurate in pronouncing it. I only pronounced it because it's a Gio name, but it was pronounced T Zimmi. They said he was the MP commander for the Armed Forces of Liberia.

  • You said you were going to spell it for the Court. Can you still spell it?

  • Really I don't know how to spell it, sir.

  • Your Honours, we would live with the spelling that has come up:

  • Do you know what Sam Bockarie was doing at this time in Seguela?

  • He was preparing at that time to contribute to the fighting in Ivory Coast - I mean, the rebel war. On the side of the rebels, I mean.

  • Now what sort of fighting was going on in the Ivory Coast, if you remember?

  • Well, at that point in time I was made to understand that some disgruntled government soldiers of the Ivory Coast attempted a coup but failed, so they decided to continue their disgruntledness in the form of a rebellion against the government at that particular time.

  • And what was Sam Bockarie doing in relation to this rebellion?

  • The whole thing was that he told me, together with others in the gathering, that he was instructed by President Charles Taylor for him to join the other people in Ivory Coast, I mean the rebels, to fight and he said he cannot only fight amongst the Ivorians to whom he was not used, except that his brothers, that is he was now referring to us, to come and join him so that he could effectively fight. So he said that was why they brought us to join him.

  • Did you take part in any fighting in Ivory Coast?

  • Where did you fight?

  • Well, at that time, from my observation and from where we passed through, almost after a week when we left from Seguela we used a dirt road to cross a river towards a big town that was called Man, because Man was a main target at that time, but there was a defensive for the government along that river. It was there that we started the fighting until we entered into Man and captured Man and then we started moving towards Bangolo.

  • Your Honours, the spelling for Man, according to the map, is M-A-N. The witness has just mentioned another name, Bangolo, and that is B-A-N-G-O-L-O.

  • L-O. Bangolo.

  • Who did you fight alongside with during this operation?

  • Well, this particular operation I'm referring to in this case, we fought along the Ivorians.

  • And when you say "we", yourselves, who were you that fought alongside the Ivorians?

  • I am referring to those of us who came from Liberia and joined Sam Bockarie and Sam Bockarie himself, together with some other authorities. I can remember one Pa Sheku that I had made mention of before, he was also with Sam Bockarie there.

  • Mr Bangura, who were they fighting against?

  • I am getting to that, your Honour:

  • Who were you fighting against, Mr Witness?

  • We were fighting against the government of Ivory Coast at that time. I mean the Gbagbo government.

  • When you say Gbagbo, can you give the full name of the person you're referring to?

  • I only used to hear about President Gbagbo, the President of Ivory Coast.

  • Have you supplied a time frame for this whole exercise? We don't want to have to deduce.

  • No, not yet, your Honour:

  • At the time that you went on the operation and captured Man, can you tell the Court when this was?

  • Yes, sir. This was still in December 2002, sir.

  • And did you go beyond Man at any point?

  • Yes, sir.

  • This first operation I'm referring to here, at that time we went almost close to Bangolo and there was an airstrip that we met there and there we met with stiff resistance from the French troops and later we received communication from Sam Bockarie and others that we should give way to the troop that we are fighting against because they were fighting us using helicopter gunships and armoured cars. They said those troops that we were attacking at that particular time, at that particular location close to Bangolo, were the French troops that came to evacuate their citizens from Man. So that resulted to our withdrawal from that point to Man.

  • And after that did you go anywhere else?

  • After our withdrawal for the French troops to collect their citizens it was a kind of double game played. The government soldiers were behind us trying to occupy Man, but because of the difficulties that we had experienced in that advance in trying to communicate with the other Ivorian fighters and their method of fighting, we decided to leave the central part of where we were fighting to join the other brothers, I mean the other Liberians, who had crossed around the Danane way, because we had heard that they had already captured Danane, so that we would join them there to fight so as to get much more understanding with them there in terms of communication, sir.

  • You said that you withdrew from this position and you were going to join your other brothers. Where was Danane?

  • Danane was one of the big towns along the Liberian - close to the Liberian border.

  • And you said you were going to join the other brothers there?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Who were these other brothers that you were going to join along that point?

  • Later when we arrived there I understood that the brothers were most of the Sierra Leonean brothers whom they had been transporting to Gbarnga before we left Monrovia, in combination with some Liberian fighters led by one Felix Doe - they used to call him Andre again and they said he was at one time a bodyguard to one of the generals in Ivory Coast, General Robert Gaye - together with Sampson that I had made mention of before who used to carry escort supply to Buedu and also Mike that used to go to Buedu. All of them were amongst the group that entered Danane.

  • Your Honours, Andrew is actually Andre, the French way of pronouncing it. It is spelt A-N-D-R-E:

  • How long overall were you in the Ivory Coast, Mr Witness? Just before you answer that, when did you join the other brothers as you described them, the other brothers at Danane?

  • Well, it was almost about - after our withdrawal it was within a week that we joined our brothers in Danane.

  • How long were you in the Ivory Coast for all together?

  • I stayed in Ivory Coast until early May, early May 2003.

  • And during that time, apart from Sam Bockarie and you've mentioned Sampson, you said you met him along with other Liberian officials at Danane, were there any other Liberian officials that came to the Ivory Coast while you were there?

  • Yes, sir.

  • In Danane one of the SSS representatives was there by the name of Kemoh. We had another - we had some other Liberian commanders who were also controlling some other targets in Ivory Coast at that time along the borderline in Ivory Coast, like the one that was called Israel, General Israel, and then we had some others like General Idi Amin.

  • Can you help the Court, you said Kemoh, one of the SSS representatives, can you spell that?

  • The way we pronounce it, it was K-E-M-O-H.

  • And you called another name, Israel. Can you give that full name?

  • No, sir, that was the common name we all knew him by at that time.

  • Your Honours, I would spell Israel as in the name of the country.

  • And was that ED Amin, as in the initials E-D, or Idi Amin?

  • Mr Witness, you called another name, Idi Amin, are you able to spell that?

  • That was just a nickname that took after the Ugandan President before, so he took the nickname so we all knew him by that nickname.

  • Your Honours, I will spell it I-D-I and not the initials I-D:

  • Did you, during your period in the Ivory Coast, receive instructions from anybody in Liberia?

  • Who did you receive any instructions from?

  • Most of the instructions at that time that came were always from Benjamin Yeaten at that time.

  • How did you know this?

  • Before the recapture of Man from Danane when we had all joined forces, we captured some anti-aircraft weapons. So when we brought those to Danane, Sampson and some other delegates went into Liberia and they said Benjamin Yeaten requested for those weapons. He said they wanted to go and use them as the rebels were closing in on Monrovia.

  • Your Honours, the last bit of the witness's testimony was not clear to the interpreter.

  • Mr Witness, you said "as the rebels were closing in on Monrovia" and you said something else which is not clear. Can you repeat what you said?

  • Yes, sir. At that point that I am talking about when we were in Ivory Coast there was also serious fighting going on in Liberia against - the rebels were fighting against Charles Taylor government at that time. So at one time I remember the request came for that weapon that we had, that four barrel anti-aircraft weapon that we had, to be taken over so that it will give more fire support to the fighters at that time in Liberia.

  • Mr Witness, who were you receiving supplies from in Liberia during the course of your stay there? In Ivory Coast, I'm sorry, your Honours.

  • Please put the question again properly.

  • Also that was a leading question, Mr Bangura.

  • How did you get on with your operations in Liberia in terms of supplies?

  • Do you mean Liberia, or Ivory Coast?

  • I'm sorry, your Honour:

  • How did you get on with supplies in the Ivory Coast?

  • We used to receive supplies from the rebel leaders in Ivory Coast through Sam Bockarie.

  • And where was Sam Bockarie getting these supplies from?

  • The other rebel commanders used to bring the supplies to him.

  • And when you say "other rebel commanders", which ones were they?

  • At that time I was in Ivory Coast I knew of one Adams who was a rebel commander also for one of the faction called the MPGO and Andre was also heading that, he was another commander, and they used to travel between Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso, because Burkina Faso was the main place that they used to call most often, or that they used to travel in between.

  • Mr Witness, you mentioned a word "MP go". Can you be very clear about what it is. Is it a name, or it is an acronym?

  • Well, it is an acronym, sir, for the various rebel factions that were fighting in Ivory Coast at that time.

  • And can you give us the exact letters that form that name?

  • M-P-G-O, M-P-G-O, something like that. So we used to call it "MP go", MPGO.

  • Mr Bangura, the answer to that previous question was Sam Bockarie would get his supplies from the rebel commanders in the Ivory Coast. Would I be correct?

  • Mr Witness, can you be clear again about where Sam Bockarie got his supplies from?

  • Yes, sir. As I told you, we used to see the rebel commanders bring supplies to Sam Bockarie at that time he was with us during this fighting, sir.

  • And which rebel commanders were they?

  • I think I have made mention of one Adams.

  • Mr Witness, they were rebel commanders of where, or what group?

  • Well, I made you to understand that the MPGO was one of the factions and the faction I'm referring to here now was where the Adams and Andre were and they were Ivorian commanders and we heard of another which was MPCI and what we heard about them was that they were occupying the Bouake area. So the other areas towards the Liberian border, the MPGOs occupied those areas, but the commanders I'm referring to, like Adams and Andre, they were around the MPGO area.

  • MPCI, is it an acronym?

  • I wonder could the witness try to explain what the acronyms stand for. He was asked a while ago, but he went from "NPO" to "MPGO", but we've never actually had the letters spelt out if he knows what they stand for.

  • I think first of all, Mr Witness, these two acronyms you've used, do you know what they stand for?

  • No, ma'am.

  • Did Sam Bockarie stay in the Ivory Coast all of the period that you were there?

  • Did he go anywhere during that time that you were there?

  • He later left Ivory Coast and went back to Burkina Faso and we later understood that he was there for a long time before we went.

  • Do you know when he left Ivory Coast to go to Burkina Faso?

  • That was some time in early 2003 after we had regrouped and captured Man and we advanced our offensive as far as Bangolo and all the way to Duekoue area.

  • And all the way to what area? Can you give the name of that place again?

  • Yes, sir. One of the big towns after Man was Bangolo and we had Duekoue.

  • Are you able to spell that?

  • Except for Bangolo, but Duekoue, those were all French names. I cannot recall to spell them. I cannot accurately spell them for you, sir.

  • Your Honours, I've just found a spelling, D-U-E-K-O-U-E. There are two "E"s there, they both carry an accent.

  • These are locations where, Mr Bangura? These are locations in which country?

  • I will get the witness to say:

  • Mr Witness, at this point where are we talking about, which country?

  • These areas are in the Ivory Coast, towards the western part of Ivory Coast, going towards the Liberian border.

  • Now, just to be clear, in your earlier testimony you talked about attacking Man and then you also mentioned moving towards Bangolo and then just a short while ago you mentioned that after you regrouped you had captured Man and you mentioned Bangolo again. Are you talking about the same operation that you mentioned before?

  • No, sir. That was when we withdrew because of the difficulties we had in communication and we joined our brothers in Danane and later we came together as a force to retake Man and to advance further, sir.

  • Where were you when Sam Bockarie left to go to --

  • He hasn't said that he knows when it was that Sam Bockarie left. All he's said is, "We learned later that he'd gone to Burkina Faso and had been there for a long time." He hasn't even said who "we" is and how they learned later, or when later was.

  • Mr Witness, I had asked you earlier about when Sam Bockarie left to go to Burkina Faso. When did he leave?

  • That was in early 2003 after we had retaken the areas I have just made mention of in the Ivory Coast.

  • And where were you based at this time?

  • After we had established a defensive at that time, because there was a ceasefire, I came back to Danane where I was and I was there temporarily at that time.

  • And was that where you were when Sam Bockarie went to Burkina Faso?

  • Do you know why he went to Burkina Faso?

  • I know some of the reasons but not all, sir.

  • Without being very detailed can you just tell the Court why you [sic] went to Burkina Faso?

  • I haven't ascertained that the witness went to Burkina Faso. You asked him, "Can you just tell the Court why you went to Burkina Faso?"

  • Your Honours, I believe it's come up completely differently from the question I asked. I was asking about Sam Bockarie.

  • Please put the question, but before you do let me deal with what Mr Munyard was going to say.

  • We haven't yet established how it is that this witness knows when Sam Bockarie went and indeed how he could know some of the reasons why he went.

  • This goes back to a much earlier answer, Mr Bangura, where the witness said he had learnt. We don't know where he learnt it from and what exactly he learnt.

  • I will get the witness to say, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, you said at the time that Sam Bockarie went to Burkina Faso you were at Danane, is that correct? You had come and were based at Danane?

  • How did you know that Sam Bockarie left Ivory Coast to go to Burkina Faso?

  • Before he left he called some of us, I and some other senior members in that particular movement at that time, to explain to us that he will be leaving and that he was going to make some appointments before he would leave for Burkina Faso at that time.

  • And where did he call you, or where did you meet with him?

  • In Danane. When we went there he had his own base where we used to call Mosquito Ground at that time. So that was where he called us and gave us the message, sir.

  • And you were going to tell the Court why he went to Burkina Faso. Why did he?

  • One of the reasons that I knew at that time was that at the time we had already established more territories at that time there were a series of misunderstandings between his forces and - I mean the Liberian brothers who came and even the Sierra Leoneans and those of the Ivorians that we met. And whenever there was that conflict they always made mention of him, that these are Sam Bockarie's - I mean Mosquito's men and even across the border there had earlier been some misunderstanding with some authorities like Benjamin Yeaten which caused some kind of infighting between him and Andre and later --

  • Mr Witness, before you continue you have given us three different groups and you talked about misunderstanding. You talked about Liberians, you talked about Sierra Leoneans and you even talked about the Ivorians. So amongst which of these groups were such misunderstandings, as you have described?

  • The misunderstanding here, let me just take a typical example, sir, between Sam Bockarie and the Liberian authorities. There came a point in time whilst we were on ceasefire, one of the bodyguards of Benjamin Yeaten whom they described as a close relative to him was killed on the front line and they said Sam Bockarie was accused of masterminding his death.

    So Benjamin Yeaten sent Andre with a delegation amongst which I recognised one of my fellow Sierra Leoneans as a high command in that group. They went there, as they said, to investigate, but at that point there arose a misunderstanding wherein the bodyguards of Sam Bockarie at that almost exchanged fire with - against Andre and those that came from Benjamin Yeaten to conduct this investigation. So there was the alarm that Sam Bockarie was at that time particular time in Ivory Coast.

  • The last point of your answer is just not clear. "There was the alarm". You said, "There was the alarm that Sam Bockarie was at that particular time in the Ivory Coast". What do you mean?

  • Well, as I have described the activities and when it happened there were journalists in our midst and even a lady who was very close to Sam Bockarie at that time, I understood later that she was a reporter for a certain press. So it was not too long that we later monitored on the international media, even the Radio France Internationale which said at one time that they had known that the notorious Sam Bockarie Mosquito who was in Sierra Leone is presently behind rebel lines in Ivory Coast.

    So his movement to Burkina Faso that I was just trying to tell you about, like he said, it was engineered by some of those authorities and they said if Sam Bockarie had remained there that was going to cause a serious problem with their war, so he went.

  • Now when you said it was engineered by those authorities, what do you mean precisely?

  • When I mentioned engineered, I said the misunderstandings that happened caused the authorities - I mean the Ivorian authorities who suggested that he should go to Burkina Faso and stay there for some time, because they were expecting more international media to come and investigate about the matter.

  • Now how did you learn all of this, Mr Witness?

  • Before Sam Bockarie left he called us in Danane at his residence where he expressed most of these points that I have made mention of into details, the causes of his leaving, and it was there that he even advised that when we stay we should maintain discipline because he said people were monitoring to know about our presence and he said the Liberian and Sierra Leonean fighters who were within the rebellion in Ivory Coast.

  • Earlier in your answers you mentioned that somebody was killed in Ivory Coast who was close to Benjamin Yeaten and Yeaten sent some people to come and investigate the incident. Among them you said you recognised one of your Sierra Leonean brothers, do you recall?

  • It's not clear what the name of this Sierra Leonean brother was. Can you just say again who this person was?

  • I can remember that High Command was amongst the delegation that came to investigate about the death of Busy Boy. That was the name of the brother who died and he was a bodyguard and a relative to Benjamin Yeaten.

  • How long was Sam Bockarie away in Burkina Faso, do you know?

  • I cannot remember the exact time he spent in Burkina Faso, but when he left at this time that I have just explained about here he remained in Burkina Faso until early May when he came and said that he has been called by Charles Taylor to go back to Liberia and contribute to defending his government as he was under pressure from various rebel attacks.

  • Now you said he was called by - he said he was called by Charles Taylor and he said to defend his - whose government?

  • I am referring to the Charles Taylor government at that time.

  • How did you know that this was what happened, that Mosquito had been called by Charles Taylor?

  • How can I say this? As a close ally or, I mean, one of the trusted soldiers to him at that time, when he came he called me over the table and that evening he and I spoke lengthily on some other issues, but he concluded by saying that all of us are finally going to leave because Charles Taylor had called him finally to go back and contribute to the fighting that was going on in Liberia at that time.

  • Mr Bangura, I think we're up to our time limit. We've already been alerted and some time has elapsed, so I hope this is convenient to take the mid-morning adjournment.

  • Very well, your Honour.

  • Mr Witness, we are now going to take the mid-morning adjournment. We are going to adjourn for half an hour and we will resume court again at 12 o'clock. Please adjourn court until 12.

  • [Break taken at 11.30 a.m.]

  • [Upon resuming at 12.00 p.m.]

  • Please proceed, Mr Bangura.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, we will briefly go back to a few issues came up before and after that we will continue with your testimony from where we left off. Now, in your earlier testimony this morning in describing your journey from the airport in Ouagadougou to Ivory Coast you said that you crossed the border according to the description that was made to you later. These were your words: "We crossed the border according to the description that was made to us later". Justice Lussick wanted to find out whether you knew yourself later that you had crossed the border or somebody told you. It appears that that question was not answered. Now, when you say you crossed the border according to the description which you were given later, what did you mean?

  • The description I referred to here in this case was not given to me by somebody at that point when I arrived at the border, although it was during the night hours, but I saw sign boards at the area where these rebel commanders came to receive us boldly written "La Cote d'Ivoire" which is in Ivory Coast. And on the other side when we were coming I saw this "Burkina Faso" on most of the sign boards along - I mean on the other side of the border where they received us. So it was like a very big custom. It was there that I knew that we were now in the Ivory Coast.

  • So when you said according to description that was made later, you actually learnt about the name of the country Ivory Coast at the point you crossed. Is that what you're saying?

  • And not later that you learnt that you were in the Ivory Coast?

  • No, sir, I knew that --

  • Is my learned friend examining-in-chief or cross-examining? I know he is rehashing evidence that has already been given yet again, but it is coming close to cross-examination rather than examination-in-chief.

  • It is, Mr Bangura, and I think Justice Lussick's, subject to my learned colleague's intervention - but I think that question has been dealt with.

  • Thank you, your Honour. I just felt it was not clearly dealt with, but I take the point:

  • You talked about an order which was given to you, the Sierra Leoneans, who were from the RUF and you said this was an order which had been given for you to go to Gbarnga. Do you recall that order?

  • You actually talked about that yesterday and you mentioned it in your testimony again today. Do you recall?

  • Mr Bangura, without wishing to interrupt you, what period are we talking about now?

  • Your Honours, we are talking about - I am going back to the witness's testimony and about an order which he said was made - he mentioned the order today and in his testimony yesterday that same - that came up again. I just wanted to clarify it.

  • But we are still not sure. Instead of leaving us guessing, just tell us what time frame is this, this order that you're referring to?

  • Your Honour, this is the order that the witness says was given in 2002, late 2002, from the ATU headquarters.

  • If we are now going backwards, which we seem to be, could we please have references to what part of the witness's testimony earlier today and what part of the witness's testimony yesterday we are now going to reconsider yet again.

  • Your Honours, yesterday's reference, I have only the reference at this point of the LiveNote version of the transcript.

  • Well, that's better than nothing.

  • That's page 29, line 8 to 10.

  • Yes, yesterday. Sorry, that is today's reference, I'm sorry, your Honour. Today's reference is page 29, lines 8 to 19 and yesterday's reference is page 13 - okay, I have got it. We have the transcript reference for yesterday, your Honour, and the transcript reference is page 13473, lines 18 to 27.

  • Please proceed, Mr Bangura.

  • Are we there? I am asking my learned friend --

  • Please put the question. If Mr Munyard needs time he will tell us.

  • Mr Witness, simply the question is what kind of order was this that you referred to? The order which was given at the ATU headquarters for you to go to Gbarnga, what kind of order was that?

  • At that point in time we referred to that order as an executive order which meant that it was an order directly from Charles Taylor, sir.

  • Thank you. Now, you in your testimony today mentioned that a number of Liberian commanders came to Danane and you met them there. Do you recall? And specifically you mentioned the names Felix Doe, Sampson, Mike. Felix Doe, Sampson and Mike. Do you recall that?

  • Yes, sir.

  • I am not trying to be difficult, but my page 29 and 28 and 30 on my font don't seem to cover this point at all.

  • We are on to a new subject.

  • You are referring to the previous references supplied. I checked those too, Mr Munyard, I couldn't find any connecting words to the subject matter.

  • Your Honour, I am prepared to let it go.

  • Your Honours, I need to correct the reference I gave. I actually gave a wrong reference. Page 23. The page number is 23 and the lines are 8 to 18.

  • For purposes of clarity, we have moved away from the order at Gbarnga and we are now back into Ivory Coast, are we?

  • That is correct, your Honour.

  • Yes. Please put your question.

  • Mr Witness, the question was about the brothers you said that joined you and these were Liberian fighters that joined you at Danane and you mentioned Felix Doe, Sampson and Mike. Do you recall?

  • Why did they join you at Danane at that time?

  • Please, sir, if you can remember what I said, we joined them at Danane. They had captured Danane before from Liberia and we left Seguela and joined them, sir.

  • And when you joined them at Danane, do you know why they had come there?

  • Yes, sir.

  • First of all, the order published earlier as we referred to it as at the ATU headquarters concerning us, the Sierra Leonean brothers, to come to Gbarnga, you know, at that time it was the same order that - it was the same mission that we met Sam Bockarie on. It was the same mission that they too brought from that side of the country at that time, sir.

  • When you say it was the same mission that they too brought from that side of the country, what exactly do you mean?

  • They were also contributing directly to the rebel fighting in the Ivory Coast.

  • And where had they come from when they got to Danane?

  • According to them, after we had met them, they crossed - some of them crossed in three fronts in major crossing areas they called to us. Some led by Israel, General Israel and Idi Amin, some of them crossed along the Butuo border area into Ivory Coast from Liberia. Some crossed through along the Loguato crossing areas from Liberia into Ivory Coast.

  • Mr Bangura, there is a lot of script that doesn't make sense that has just been recorded and frankly I didn't make sense of exactly what it is the witness said. For instance, where the witness said, "Some of them crossed on three fronts in major crossing areas, they called", and then there is something that doesn't make sense. Do you see that?

  • I take your point.

  • Et cetera and then Butuo and then some other spellings. This doesn't make sense.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, let us be clearer in the position that you have just described, the situation that you have just described. How did these different Liberian brothers, as you call them, come into the Ivory Coast at Danane where you found them?

  • As I was saying, Sampson and Andre, who is Felix Doe, and others crossed from Loguato border in Liberia into Ivory Coast to capture Danane. Then General Israel that I mentioned before, that was also a Liberian operating in the Ivory Coast at that time, they crossed from Butuo border and they were in Gbankoi in Ivory Coast. This was exactly the picture I was trying to bring out, sir.

  • I believe you mentioned three different crossings earlier, is that right?

  • What we have now is a description of two of those crossings.

  • Please, sir, you know, to be specific the third area was not too - I was not too familiar with, but we heard of other brothers who I later recognised and even had communication with, such as a Sierra Leonean brother at that time with Benjamin Yeaten by the name of Rashid Foday. They also crossed around, you know, the Maryland area to attack --

  • Your Honours, can he repeat the name of the place.

  • Toloplea in Ivory Coast.

  • Mr Interpreter, did you get the name?

  • Yes, I did. He said Toloplea in the Ivory Coast.

  • No more interruption, Mr Witness. You continue with your answer if you have not finished it.

  • Mr Witness, you mentioned one of the crossings from the Liberian border as Loguato. Are you able to spell that?

  • Really I cannot promise the actual spelling, but it is spelt as Loguato.

  • Your Honours, L-O-G-U-A-T-O:

  • You also mentioned a place Toloplea. Are you able to spell that?

  • As I pronounced it, it is a French town in the Ivory Coast but it is like T-O-L-O-P-L-E-A, Toloplea, something like that.

  • Now, you mentioned a Sierra Leonean. You said Rashid Foday, do you recall?

  • I can remember, you know, when I spoke of the RUF guesthouse in Monrovia before, this was one of the bodyguards that was assigned with Sankoh that was taking care of this guesthouse, but at that moment of that operation he was working with Benjamin Yeaten.

  • Just pause, Mr Bangura. Could we have a problem with this piece of evidence given a previous witness? Nobody has raised it, so let it go.

  • As it is immediately, your Honour:

  • You also mentioned High Command. Who was he? This was in your earlier testimony this morning you mentioned that High Command was someone who came to investigate the death of some relative of Benjamin Yeaten. Do you recall that?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Who was High Command?

  • High Command, I came to know him in person in Monrovia and in late 2002 before this operation and - but I was hearing his name behind the rebel lines in Sierra Leone as one of the bodyguards to Superman. In Monrovia, at that time that I am referring to in 2002, he came to my house with my little brother that was staying with me with whom they were like fighting colleagues at that time with Superman. He introduced him as a bodyguard to Superman before, but at the moment that he was speaking to me he identified himself as one of the bodyguards to Benjamin Yeaten at that time in Liberia after the death of Superman, sir.

  • Thank you. Now, let us continue with where we left off just before the break. You said that Sam Bockarie came back from Burkina Faso to Danane and he told you in a meeting that he had been called by Charles Taylor to go and assist with fighting in Liberia. Do you recall that?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Do you know what fighting was going on in Liberia at this time?

  • What fighting was this?

  • At this point there were two rebel groups fighting against the Charles Taylor government at that time and they had the LURD rebels, which was also an acronym, LURD, they crossed in from Guinea and they were closing in on Monrovia from the Tubmanburg, the Bomi Hill Highway and at that time Sam Bockarie was talking to us that these LURD rebels had also captured Ganta from Guinea into Liberia and also they had another rebel group which was also fighting against Charles Taylor's government at that time from the Ivory Coast. They called them the MODEL, which was also an acronym for their movement. I don't really know the actual name, but it was commonly known as MODEL. It was an acronym. They had already crossed in that Nimba County area fighting. So he said he had been called upon for us to go and help with the situation.

  • Did Sam Bockarie leave Ivory Coast at any point?

  • Please come back with that question, sir. It is not too clear to me.

  • Following this request that Sam Bockarie said had been made of him by Charles Taylor to go into Liberia and assist with the fighting, did he leave Ivory Coast?

  • I thought he was in Burkina Faso at some point. He had left Ivory Coast and was in Burkina Faso at some point.

  • We have the witness already on record as testifying that he, Sam Bockarie, came to Danane.

  • It was at Danane that they had the meeting.

  • Then he explained his new orders, yes.

  • Just to be clear, Mr Witness, where did you have the meeting with Sam Bockarie where he told you about the request from Mr Charles Taylor for him to go to Liberia and assist with the fighting? Where was this meeting?

  • He said this to me in the evening when I came from the front line in Danane, at the residence of one of the SSS representatives that was in Danane at that time, Kemoh.

  • This was in the Ivory Coast?

  • Following this request, did Sam Bockarie leave Ivory Coast?

  • When did he leave Ivory Coast?

  • After he had spoken to us that evening, the following morning all the Liberians and Sierra Leonean fighters that were in Ivory Coast at that time were ordered to withdraw immediately across the border and we started moving.

  • About what time was this?

  • This was I think early - in early May 2003.

  • And where did you go from Danane?

  • Those of us who were in the Danane area, Danane, Bangolo, in that region that I have mentioned, we all withdrew through the Loguato border.

  • And at Loguato border where are you? Which country is that?

  • Loguato is the customs town on the side of Liberia. On the side of Liberia.

  • Did anything happen when you got to Loguato?

  • Upon our arrival at the border we met the presence of more security reinforcements of the Liberian securities, including the ATUs at the customs at Loguato.

  • Just before we move on to Liberia, I would like to have the witness shown a map.

  • What is the number, please, Mr Bangura?

  • Just one moment, your Honour. It is not one of the maps in the --

  • Is it the one you referred to earlier as something 7?

  • Yes, M7, your Honour. I understand it is already an exhibit of the court as P-6.

  • I see.

  • Can the witness be shown the map:

  • Can you move over to the projector, please. Mr Witness, you have been shown a map?

  • Yes, sir.

  • And what does it say? What country does that map feature?

  • I can see a map of Ivory Coast, sir.

  • Are you able to identify the locations of some of the towns that you mentioned in your testimony in the Ivory Coast, the places that you were during the period you were in the Ivory Coast?

  • Now, can I ask you to first of all indicate the area where you entered the Ivory Coast?

  • By using an arrow pointing into the Ivory Coast from where you came from. Using a pen, can you draw an arrow showing the area on the map where you entered into the Ivory Coast?

  • Yes, sir.

  • Please do that. Perhaps you could do a few more arrows in the same area. Now, do you recognise the places where you stayed in the Ivory Coast on the map?

  • Which ones do you recognise?

  • I recognise Korhogo.

  • And can you just put a circle around Korhogo. Where else do you recognise?

  • I recognise Seguela.

  • Can you put a circle around Seguela. Where else do you recognise?

  • I recognise Man.

  • Please do the same. Anywhere else that you recognise?

  • I recognise Bangolo.

  • Please proceed to do the same thing. Do a circle?

  • Mr Bangura, as we go along if you recognise that some of these spellings are not properly spelt on the transcript it is incumbent upon you to correct that, please.

  • I take the point, your Honour:

  • Where else do you recognise?

  • I recognise Danane.

  • Please do the same for Danane. Anywhere else?

  • I recognise Biankouma.

  • Can you do the same thing. Your Honours, just to clarify the question of spellings, I had been providing spellings during the witness's earlier testimony and they were spellings from the map. If they have come up differently now what we have on the record earlier should prevail, your Honour.

  • Did you spell Biankouma before?

  • Not Biankouma. I will spell that. It is B-I-A-N-K-O-U-M-A:

  • Mr Witness, you said you left Danane and crossed into Liberia through the border at Loguato. Are you able to locate that area on the map, the area where you exited Ivory Coast into Liberia?

  • Yes, sir, I can locate it by arrow here, sir.

  • Please go ahead and do so. Thank you, Mr Witness. Your Honours, may I respectfully move that this document be marked for identification?

  • Mr Bangura, before we do that, there is two places without names on the map and the procedure as I recall adopted by the Prosecution before was to give them some sort of a number to indicate what they were. We have got a point of entry and a point of exit that are unnamed. I just want to properly put it on the --

  • Yes, your Honour. The witness has indicated a position north of Ivory Coast on the border point with Burkina Faso to be the point at which he entered or they entered Ivory Coast from Burkina Faso.

  • Yes, very well. And there is an exit point.

  • And the witness has also indicated with two arrows a point on the border between Ivory Coast and Liberia just close to Danane as the area where they exited from Ivory Coast into Liberia.

  • Very well. Then that is a map on which the witness has marked several towns - identified several towns and an entry and an exit point and it becomes MFI-8.

  • Your Honours, can we have the witness mark those points by just putting a number, perhaps number 1 and number 2.

  • The point of entry is number 1 and the point of exit is number 2. Is that what you [microphone not activated]

  • Please ask the witness to mark that. I note my microphone was off. I asked the witness mark the map as he has already himself indicated.

    Mr Witness, what we would like you to do is to put a number 1 at the place you came into Ivory Coast and a number 2 at the point you say you left Ivory Coast.

  • Thank you, Mr Witness.

  • For purposes of record we will note that MFI-8 is a map of the Ivory Coast. The unmarked version is a Prosecution exhibit P-6 and as marked by this witness it will become MFI-8.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, you were describing events at Loguato, that is the border crossing point into Liberia, do you recall?

  • What happened when you arrived there?

  • When we arrived at the Loguato crossing point, we met an increasing number of the Liberian security forces, mostly the ATU, and there was an order that they said Benjamin Yeaten gave instruction that all of us who were coming from the Ivory Coast at that time should be disarmed and made to wait at the border until he comes to meet Sam Bockarie for his reassignment - for his new assignment, sir.

  • Mr Witness, you said that there was an order and you go on to say that - I believe you said you were told. How did you learn of this order from Benjamin Yeaten?

  • Upon our arrival at the border, before we crossed into Loguato on the side of the Ivorian side, they call the village Gbinta which is the custom post of the Ivorians, it was there that Sam Bockarie spoke to some of us who he felt were officers. He said now that we were there we should not resist the order that we met, that is a disarmament, because we suggested to him that since they had said that he was going for a new assignment for us to fight, why have we been asked to disarm here now. He said that instruction came through Benjamin Yeaten. He said he himself is expected to come and meet him. He advised that he, Sam Bockarie, should stay at Gbinta so that the other people, the civilians around that area, wouldn't notice that he had returned to Liberia, and that we should obey all orders that we met on the border, sir.

  • You just mentioned twice the name of the place where Sam Bockarie discussed with you the order that came from Benjamin Yeaten. What is the name of that place again?

  • The area Sam Bockarie spoke to us at the border was inside the Ivory Coast. They called the place Gbinta. Gbinta, G-B-I-N-T-A. Gbinta.

  • Did you comply with the order to disarm at the border?

  • Were you met at the border by anybody at this time?

  • Who met you there?

  • I can remember after we had disarmed in Loguato we left all our belongings across the border. Some of us returned to Sam Bockarie at Gbinta. Gbinta was like - it was like a river dividing Loguato and Gbinta, so we were with him when Dopoe Menkarzon came. Dopoe Menkarzon, at that time I had known him. He said he had been sent to know exactly what had happened to Sam Bockarie when he was in Burkina Faso. Then he started explaining some stories, sir.

  • Just before we go on, you said you had known Dopoe Menkarzon. Where did you know him before?

  • I knew this Dopoe Menkarzon during the early stages in the rebellion in Sierra Leone when he served as one of the battle group commanders for the NPFL fighters who conducted the Top 20 in Sierra Leone.

  • Now, after this meeting with Dopoe Menkarzon, did anything happen after Bockarie's meeting with Dopoe Menkarzon?

  • Later on, I think about two days later, whilst Sam Bockarie was still in Gbinta he was taken to Cocopa, a rubber plantation company in Nimba County.

  • Now, you said just a short while ago that during the meeting with Dopoe Menkarzon Sam Bockarie started explaining stories. You said, "He started explaining stories." Who was explaining stories?

  • Sam Bockarie was explaining some incidents that occurred when he returned to Burkina Faso while we were in Ivory Coast.

  • Your Honours, Cocopa is spelt one word. I just need to confirm the spelling. It is C-O-C-O-P-A:

  • You said that Bockarie was moved to Cocopa by whom?

  • At the time that they came to receive him to go to Cocopa I was not around him and I never knew who really took him to Cocopa at that time.

  • And where was Cocopa?

  • He said Nimba County.

  • Yes, your Honour, but I want to be more specific:

  • You said in Nimba County. Whereabouts in Nimba County was Cocopa?

  • I came to know this Cocopa area when we entered Saclepea and I was trying to go to Ganta and the area is between Saclepea when going to Ganta.

  • You said you went there when Sam Bockarie was taken to Cocopa. Did you learn who took him to Cocopa?

  • Yourself did you leave this Loguato where you had disarmed at the border?

  • Where did you go to?

  • After we had learnt that they had taken Sam Bockarie to Cocopa, an order came from the ATU commander at that time, who was at Loguato, that they have ordered - because the order was passing through Benjamin Yeaten always. They said it was from Benjamin Yeaten that we have been ordered to move to Saclepea. All of us who had come to Liberia along with Sam Bockarie were to move to Saclepea.

  • Did you comply with this order?

  • What happened at Saclepea?

  • We travelled in a long convoy and when we arrived there we met Benjamin Yeaten at Saclepea that morning, that morning of the 9th. Benjamin Yeaten further instructed us to go to one of the villages from Saclepea going towards Tapita. They called the village Gbankoi. It was there that we went and were camped in a very big school compound that morning.

  • Mr Witness, are you able to provide the Court with the spelling for this village where you went to?

  • The way the village was pronounced I can rightly spell it as G-B-A-N-K-O-I, something like Gbankoi.

  • Did anything happen at Gbankoi?

  • Yes, sir. When we arrived there that morning Benjamin Yeaten came the next day and called for a formation, that is we the soldiers were to gather together, and he asked for all the officers - I mean the senior commanders, those of us who recognised ourselves, to get to one of the classrooms and that he wanted to have a meeting with us. When we got there he asked if everybody had come from the border and we said, no, some people have had their cars broken down on the way and so we were expecting them to come. He only said that whilst we were there he wanted nobody to go anywhere, he will be coming the next day and he will take Sam Bockarie and all of us who were there to a new assignment and on that assignment those who had families with them, or properties, would be asked to go to Monrovia, but for now we have to wait for that assignment. Then he left that afternoon, sir.

  • Now, can you tell the Court who were in this group that you were with at Gbankoi? Which forces were in this group? You have been talking about the Sierra Leonean RUF as well as Liberians, which ones were in the group?

  • Well, at Gbankoi at this moment the group comprised different people, but we were largely the Sierra Leoneans who came who had crossed with Sam Bockarie into Liberia. Then among those of the ATUs we had another group who also followed us to Ivory Coast that were just fighting - I mean fighting RUF, some RUF fighters who when they later heard of Sam Bockarie later followed us to Ivory Coast. We also had some other people who were not fighters, but because of maybe their closeness - close relation with some other people behind Sam Bockarie at that time were with us. We also had among these civilian groups some who were professional engineers, technicians and some of us were also having our wives and children among this group. Even the Ivorians, the Ivory Coast that we were coming from, some fighters came with some Ivorian wives, some of them came with some Ivorian brothers as bodyguards, or just friends, or drivers. So it was a very large group, mixed.

  • Mr Witness, how long did you stay at Gbankoi?

  • I spent just two days at Gbankoi.

  • After two days in Gbankoi, did you go anywhere?

  • Yes, sir.

  • After Benjamin Yeaten had come the next day and spoken to us, I learnt from some of his bodyguards that came along with him, like Colonel Jungle whom I had met before, he said he was in charge of the defensive position at Ganta and that there was going to be a general attack the next day on Ganta. He called some of my friends in the ATU who had come to also contribute, so I decided to be part of that operation. That was where I went in Ganta.

  • You said, Mr Witness, that you learnt from some of the bodyguards of Benjamin Yeaten that there was going to be this attack, or there was going to be some activity in Ganta, fighting. How did you learn this? How did you get in touch with these bodyguards?

  • As I told you, sir, when Benjamin Yeaten came to see us at Gbankoi these bodyguards came along with him and I had the opportunity to speak with some of them as my old friends.

  • Now, how far away was Ganta from this Gbankoi where you were?

  • Approximately it was about two miles, or one and a half miles, something like that.

  • Did you go to Ganta?

  • And how long were you at Ganta?

  • For the first time that I went that evening, we had an attack the next day. Then late in the evening most of these commanders had withdrawn to those villages like Saclepea and Bahn ^ around the area. That evening I was called by High Command whom I had recognised before in Monrovia as a friend to my younger brother. He said, "Jabaty, you know, your effort was really appreciated and the people spoke of your efforts even when you were in Ivory Coast concerning certain operation in Toloplea to resist the entrance of MODEL to Liberia". So he suggested that I should go and move my relatives and friends from Gbankoi to come and stay with them for good recommendation tomorrow.

    That notwithstanding, on that particular day I did not resist what he said, so he and I drove in my car and we went. We picked up my friends and relatives to come back and we based at Ganta until our reassignment that they were talking about takes place.

  • So when you got back to Gbankoi, did anything happen?

  • Yes, sir, when we arrived at Gbankoi that night we - the whole area was quiet when we got there. Only a few soldiers like those who were wounded or sick and some nursing mothers, they were all sitting down in that sad mood. When I asked them about the whereabouts of everybody they said they were there that afternoon when a long convoy came and Master was among that convoy. That was Mosquito and his wife. They said they were going to show the new assignment to Mosquito towards Tapita and they asked for more men and at the end of the day they said they would deploy them to start the assignment straightaway. So --

  • Mr Witness, can I pause you. You said that you were told that a convoy had come to Gbankoi that afternoon and you said that they told the - whoever was giving you this information said that they - who were they that said to them that they were going to show the fighters their new assignment? You have said they, they, they. Who spoke to these people at Gbankoi from the convoy that came?

  • They said Benjamin Yeaten spoke to them and also they said that Mosquito - I mean Sam Bockarie himself spoke to them on the same issue. So that evening I left and went back to Ganta together with High Command who was with me.

  • So based on the information which you gathered at Gbankoi, were you told where exactly these people had gone to, your colleagues who you left behind before?

  • No, sir. They only showed me the direction that they took towards Tapita.

  • And yourself, after you learnt about this, what did you do?

  • Well, that night my mission was to go and join the other colleagues in Ganta for the operation, because I had some friends in the ATU and even amongst most of the boys around Sam Bockarie at that particular time, they were all in different companies. So most of the people that came to fight in Ganta at that time were like colleagues of mine with whom I was in the same company with in the ATU. So later when I went I made a follow up later about where those people went and where Sam Bockarie and others went.

  • What did you learn in the follow up that you made?

  • When we returned to Ganta that night very early in the morning there was a village almost at the outskirts of Ganta Town. The village was called Togleawen where Dr Magona who was at one time the chief medic for Sam Bockarie at that time, he was working with Benjamin Yeaten on the front line and he was based there.

    So that morning a group of fighters assigned on the ground there on Benjamin Yeaten's base came and picked up the jeep that I was using and they forcibly drove it to go to where Benjamin Yeaten used to base in Ganta and when I woke up I was annoyed and I wanted to resist, but High Command said, "Look, don't worry. Let's follow them to the base and see why they have done that". Then he said, "Do not just take any action like that", because something was going on. So High Command and I, we road his motorbike and went there. So when we got to the base we met a man that I recognised and they introduced as a former Liberian ambassador at one time in Guinea by the name of Tiagen Wantee. He was on the ground as a representative for Benjamin Yeaten in his absence.

  • Mr Witness, can I pause you at this point. You mentioned a name earlier of a place?

  • Are you able to spell that for the Court?

  • Those were all - that was actually a strange town in terms of pronunciation for me, but should I try it is T-O-G-L-E-A-W-E-N. Something like that. Togleawen.

  • Madam President, while we are on spellings could we have the spelling of the name of the former Liberian ambassador to Guinea, please.

  • Mr Witness, you called the name of a former ambassador of Liberia to Guinea who you said was on the ground where you went and was representing Yeaten. What's the name of this person again?

  • They called him Tiagen One, something like that. I didn't know whether it was a nickname or a Gio name, but they used to call him Tiagen One.

  • Are you able to provide the Court with a spelling?

  • I don't know the actual spelling for that name, sir, but it was pronounced Tiagen One.

  • Your Honour, we would accept the spelling that has come up. I have T-I-A-G-E-N and One as in the number. That is on page 79, line 2, on my screen. I can't see exactly what font this is.

  • Proceed, Mr Bangura, please.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Mr Witness, you were describing the situation as you found it when you arrived at this point where your jeep had been taken to. What happened when you arrived there?

  • When I reported the matter to Tiagen One who was introduced to me as Benjamin Yeaten's representative, he said that they were looking for me that evening to send me to somewhere, but he never knew where I went to. So he said I will take my jeep, but that he said he had an assignment for me. He said I should go to the S4 at that time based on the ground to give me rice, a bag of rice, and a bag of salt to take it to the other target on the Gbarnga Highway which was one of the defensives for Ganta to the commander at that time called Christopher Varmoh who was also known as Mosquito.

  • Thank you, Mr Witness. You mentioned the name S4. You said Tiagen One said he had an assignment for you and he sent you to go to the S4. Who was the S4, or what does S4 mean?

  • That was the person responsible for the food supplies to the front line at that time.

  • Yes, sir. That was the title, sir.

  • Did you get on to this mission that you were assigned to?

  • Yes, sir, I received this supply and I was assigned with another armed men who were to go with me, but the four of us whom I went with from to Togleawen, we drove my own jeep and we arrived at a junction at a road leading from Saclepea going to Palala and the other road coming from Ganta. That was an intersection where they had a very dangerous checkpoint at that time known as Make It Red. So we arrived there that morning and we met a heavy convoy coming from the Saclepea direction and going towards --

  • Mr Witness, just finish where they were going towards and I will just pause you after that.

  • And as I told you when we were going and we arrived at that checkpoint that I described we met a long convoy coming from Saclepea - from the Saclepea direction and going towards Monrovia.

  • You mentioned a name. You said at that intersection - you said the area there was commonly called and you mentioned a name. Can you repeat that name?

  • We used to call the place Make It Red. It was a rail track - a railway track that crossed over the road, but they used to call the place in Liberian English Make It Red.

  • Are you able to spell that, please?

  • The understanding that I got from that pronunciation in Liberian English was that "make it red". That is M-A-K-E, make, it, I-T, and R-E-D, red. But they said "mek it rey" [phon], it was like make it red. So that is what I understood from that pronunciation.

  • Thank you. Did anything happen when you came across this convoy?

  • I stopped my vehicle and I asked everybody in the vehicle to get down and salute the convoy, as I recognised that Benjamin Yeaten's pick-up was amongst the convoy, some SS jeep were amongst the convoy, I mean the Special Security Unit that were under Charles Taylor, and the jeep was in the convoy and I knew that the convoy that they were talking about that took Sam Bockarie along, that might have been the convoy. So we saluted them and Benjamin Yeaten, who knew me before, stopped and I saluted him especially and he signaled to me to approach him. When I walked closer to him he asked me where I was coming from and I said I was coming from the combat camp, and he asked where I was going to and I explained to him that I was sent by Tiagen One and he just waved to me, something like asking me to go back. When I turned round to go to my jeep one of his close allies at that time, who was also a Sierra Leonean that crossed with us at that time with Sam Bockarie, by the name of Salami, drove closer to my vehicle and he ordered all the men in my vehicle with the exception of the one armed man assigned to me by Tiagen One to be disarmed and without resisting any orders we gave all our weapons that we had on us from the combat camp to him. From that point he too assigned some other armed men into my vehicle and they were threatening that the orders that had been given to them should not be taken lightly and they asked me to drive and join the convoy as they were moving ahead towards Monrovia Highway.

  • Where did this convoy lead to?

  • When we left that point at the Make It Red, for about two miles ahead there was a logging company which was called CNC and there the convoy that had passed before I met them all parked in a big fence and so I also went and parked my own vehicle, but I was still in the vehicle, but the area was somehow quiet and everybody looked serious and not too long --

  • Mr Witness, before you continue can I just pause you. Just to be clear, you said you moved to a place where there was a logging company. What is the name of that company?

  • I used to hear the pronunciation, they said CNC. I think it was something like an acronym for that company. They said CNC, but it was a logging company area.

  • Thank you. Now, when you came across this convoy where Benjamin Yeaten was, did you notice anything within the convoy that caught your attention?

  • I noticed two things that were actually of concern to me and minus the changes I saw in the vehicles, like some vehicles we brought from Ivory Coast were controlled by some of our men that came from Ivory Coast, but I saw different drivers in the vehicles and I didn't see any of the former men in the vehicle, and in one of the pick-ups that we brought one of my Sierra Leonean brothers was tied up, naked and tied up, and he was crying and he said they were going to kill him too. So at that particular point I saw that the pick-up went somewhere towards the Monrovia Highway, towards Palala Highway and I heard some gunshots later.

  • Mr Witness, my question was whether you noticed anything that caught your attention and you explained that there were two things. One of them you talked about vehicles and that is not very clear.

  • What I was trying to say is that I saw some of the vehicles like the one Sam Bockarie himself was driving from Ivory Coast into Liberia. I saw that different people were in the vehicles, so that was one of the changes I saw. It was as though I thought that they had maybe seized those vehicles from them and also the brother I had spoken about, we used to call him Van Damme, and he was tied up in on