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

  • Mr Camara, the very last thing I asked you yesterday was had you ever been - well, I put to you that you had never been involved in the coup attempt of Dr Manneh in 1981 and you agreed that you had not joined that coup attempt. When you resigned from the Gambian gendarmerie in 1986 you left home to look for greener pastures, as you put it, not because you had been involved with a group who had tried to overthrow the Gambian government. That is right, isn't it?

  • [No interpretation]

  • I didn't hear an answer, although I think I heard the witness make a statement. Mr Interpreter, has there been an answer?

  • Can the witness repeat, please, what he said?

  • Mr witness, please repeat your statement - your answer.

  • He never did that. He never said that.

  • I am going to rephrase the question:

  • You did not leave the Gambia after you resigned from the gendarmerie because you had been involved with a group who had tried to overthrow the Gambian government, did you?

  • I never did that. I never said that.

  • All right. We know from your answers last week and yesterday that the reason you left the Gambia after resigning from the gendarmerie was in order to make yourself financially independent of your family and that is correct, isn't it?

  • Uh-huh, yes. That is the case, yes.

  • Thank you. Now, we also know that at some point in 2006 investigators from this Court came to see you and interviewed you for the first of a number of occasions and they made notes, as you told us yesterday, of what you told them and they read those notes back to you. Before I take you to those notes, can I just ask you this. Was there anything in that first interview when they read it back to you that you did not agree with? Can you now remember was there anything in that first interview that you had to say to the investigators, "No, you have written that down wrong. That is not what I said"?

  • No, I don't think so. I did some rectification indeed, but I don't remember them exactly.

  • Well, now, I am going to show you that and parts of the other interviews and I am going to distribute copies so that you can have it in front of you and everybody else in Court can have it in front of them. (Your Honour, if you will bear with me for just a moment? Your Honour, there should be the usual number of copies available for the Court, my learned friends opposite, the legal officers and the witness. For the sake of speed I have photocopied the entire contents, but I am certainly not intending to take the witness to more than a small fraction of the bundle. I think one is going to be taken to the interpreter, or has been taken to the interpreter.)

    Now before we look at the first interview, I want to ask you very briefly a couple of questions about the coup that Dr Manneh was involved in. You were 17 at the time, that is right, isn't it, 1981? 17, or 18? In fact you would have been 16 or 17, yes?

  • That is true. I have never told you that I participated in a coup détat.

  • No, I am not suggesting you have, Mr Camara. In 1986 there was no coup attempt, was there?

  • I am not aware of a coup détat in 1986 in Gambia. In 1981 there was a coup détat, but I am not aware of any coup détat in 1986.

  • We are in agreement on that. And just to put the picture in full, in 1987 there were elections in the Gambia, weren't there, that were won by the then President Dawd Jawarra? (I will do spellings in a moment.)

  • I don't remember that.

  • I don't remember that at all, because I was not there at that time.

  • Dawd is spelt variously, but D-A-W-D, Jawarra J-A-W-A-R-R-A:

  • Dawd Jawarra, who eventually became Sir Dawd Jawarra, was overthrown in a coup - a military coup - in 1994, wasn't he?

  • I was not there at that time.

  • You weren't there, Mr Witness, but you have already told this Court many things that you didn't see but that other people told you. Did you become aware in 1994, or shortly after that, that Dawd Jawarra had been overthrown in a military coup by General - well he was not general then, but by a military Officer called Yayha Jammeh?

  • Yes, I heard that on the radio indeed.

  • Yes, thank you. Yayha spelt I believe Y-A-Y-H-A, although there may be other versions, and Jammeh J-A-M-M-E-H:

  • And indeed when you went back to the Gambia after you left Liberia in the mid-1990s, Yayha Jammeh was still the President, wasn't he?

  • In 1996, when I went back to Gambia, Yayha Jammeh was indeed President.

  • Thank you. And one final piece of the jigsaw, please. After the 1981 coup, did Gambia join into a confederation with Senegal that was called Senegambia that lasted until 1989? Are you able to help us at all with that?

  • Yes, there was a confederation in 1981 between The Gambia and Senegal.

  • And are you aware that it was dissolved in 1989?

  • I was not in Gambia at that time.

  • No, we know that, but did anybody tell you?

  • Yes, I have heard of it.

  • So, when you went back in the mid-1990s there was a new government in The Gambia. That is right, isn't it?

  • 1996, yes.

  • And Senegal was no longer in partnership with the government of The Gambia in a confederation. That is correct, isn't it?

  • In 1996, when I left, it was Yayha Jammeh who was President. It is Jawarra who made the confederation with Senegal, not Jammeh.

  • Yes, thank you. Right. Can you turn, please, to tab 1, and I am going to be referring you to the page numbers printed at the top right-hand side of the page that start with a number of zeros, but I am going to miss out the zeros when I quote a page number to you. It is the very first page of tab 1. Do you have that, Mr Camara?

  • Tab 1? I don't understand what you are saying, sir.

  • I will help you. If you close the cover - close the cover, Mr Camara, the plastic cover, is there a number 1 on that plastic cover? I am not sure if you are looking at the cover, or the screen.

  • Madam Court Attendant, can you assist the witness, please.

  • Can I just confirm that what has been given out does actually have a number on the top of each divider?

  • Thank you. When I say "tab" I am asking you to look at the pages behind the grey plastic divider with a number on it, do you follow? Now can we go, please, to the very first page of the very first interview. It is page number 23626, the date which is for some reason written backwards is 7 October 2006 and the time is 1530 hours, that is to say half-past-3 in the afternoon. You are being interviewed by John Berry and Abraham Haddad, both of whom you told us yesterday you understood when they spoke in English to you. Can you now remember how long that interview went on for? How many hours did it last? I am not asking you for a precise figure, but in rough terms how long did that first interview take that started at 3.30 in the afternoon?

  • No, I really can't tell you. I don't remember.

  • All right. But this interview was definitely read back to you, wasn't it?

  • Yes, what is written in this document. What I see in this document.

  • What is written is what you said to the investigators, is that what you are telling us?

  • No, that is not what I said. I was - I didn't participate in a coup détat in Gambia.

  • No, I haven't started asking you about what is written there, the detail. I just want to know first of all this was read back to you, you have confirmed that, and indeed if you turn over to the third page, number 23628 --

  • In 1986 - what I said in 1986 I was in service in the Gambian gendarmerie.

  • Mr Camara, we will move a lot more quickly if you just listen to the questions and answer the questions, rather than tell us things you want to tell us. Now would you look, please, at the third page, 23628. Do you have that page?

  • Yes, I have the page.

  • The third line from the top reads as follows, "That when you departed from Libya they were supplied with all of the AK47's, RPG, GMG and one barrel launchers". Do you see that?

  • I see the paper. I see the - yes, yes, of course I see the paper, but I can't answer your question.

  • Well, I am going to ask you. The person who has written these notes has actually written the words, "That when you departed from Libya they were supplied with all of the [weapons]", I am calling them. That is the clearest possible indication that this was being read back to you, wasn't it?

  • I am telling you that I see the paper, but I cannot answer the question you are asking. I see the paper, but I do not agree with what is written.

  • Are you saying you don't agree that it was read back to you?

  • They read the statements, but these things I was not asked these questions at that time.

  • I am sorry, you were not asked which questions at that time? You see, I haven't asked you anything about any of the questions that they have recorded thus far. All I have asked you about is were these notes read back to you, as the third line on the third page appears incontrovertibly to suggest? Can we stick with that question, please. Were these notes read back to you by John Berry, or Abraham Haddad, or both of them?

  • They have read the statements to me.

  • Yes. And, as you told us yesterday, they read the statements to you so that you could confirm that what they had recorded you as saying was correct. That is right, isn't it?

  • The statement - I need to make some rectifications in the statements I have in front of me.

  • I am just pausing a moment, Mr Camara, in order that the Court is ready for me to proceed with the next question.

  • We were just checking the record, Mr Munyard. We have done that and it is being rectified.

  • Mr Munyard, if I may I have noticed that on the record part of your question is - the first like three words are never recorded and I was wondering why. It is because somewhere in the interpretation booth the microphone is not switched off for yours to come through and so I have sent the Court Manager to go and check on that.

  • Thank you, your Honour. I will go back to basics and do it as simply as I can:

  • You told us yesterday that at each of these interviews you were asked questions and at the end of the interview the interviewers read back to you their record of what you had said so that you could either agree that it was a correct record, or amend or change it if it wasn't correct. That is what you told this Court yesterday, do you remember?

  • They have read the statements to me and there are typing errors and rectifications have to be made.

  • And so did you point this out to them as they read it back to you? Did you point out the areas that needed rectification?

  • At that time, yes.

  • And did they make the changes?

  • They have not made the rectifications, apparently. I wouldn't know if they have made them or not, in fact.

  • Mr Camara, can you think what would be the point of the interviewers reading back their interview notes unless it was to make sure that you agreed that they had made an accurate record of what you had said?

  • You should ask that question to the investigators, maybe.

  • Well, I am asking you. Can you think of what would be the purpose of reading back the interview to you except to make sure that they had made an accurate record of what you had just told them?

  • I am not the interviewer. I don't know the way they do their job. They have asked me questions and I answered, so I don't know how they put down my answers.

  • You were a member of the gendarmerie in Gambia for five years, weren't you?

  • That is true.

  • And by gendarmerie do we mean a kind of police force, or indeed the police force?

  • The gendarmerie they have police functions and they have militia functions, both of them.

  • Did you carry out police functions during your five years with the gendarmerie?

  • Gendarmerie they have both functions, police and military.

  • We know that. Did you ever carry out police functions with the gendarmerie?

  • No, but military functions rather. Military Police functions rather.

  • Military Police functions, is that what you are saying you were involved in?

  • And in the course of those functions, did you ever take statements from anybody about offences that had been committed?

  • And when you took a statement from a person, did you write it down? Did you write down what they were telling you?

  • Yes, indeed. If I take their statement, I write it down.

  • And did you read it back to them to make sure that you had accurately recorded what they were telling you?

  • Yes, of course.

  • And if the person you were taking the statement from ever said to you, "I didn't mean to say that", or, "You have written that down wrong", did you change it there and then?

  • It is standard police procedure, isn't it?

  • And that is what happened when you were interviewed by amongst others a Canadian Policeman called John Berry, isn't it?

  • They have read the statements. The problem is what is in the statements themselves.

  • That wasn't what I asked you. Can you go back to the question, please?

  • Yes, they have read the statements to me.

  • In order for you to correct anything that they had written down inaccurately, yes?

  • They must be typographical errors.

  • Well, let's just clear up what a typographical error is. A typographical error is when somebody spells something wrongly, or misses out a "not" when they are trying to write down a negative. That is what you mean by typographical error, isn't it?

  • Yes, I don't think so.

  • Well, you seem to be both agreeing and disagreeing with me. What do you mean by a typographical error, Mr Camara?

  • I don't know. I don't know that, sir. I don't follow what you are saying.

  • You have just told this Court there are typographical errors in the written notes of the interviews that you gave to the investigators. What do you mean by typographical errors?

  • What I see there are mistakes on the person who interviewed me.

  • Yes, you have told us that these mistakes are typographical errors. Just tell the learned Judges what you mean by typographical errors?

  • I don't speak English. I don't understand English. I can't say exactly what --

  • Well, Mr Camara, it was not my phrase. It was your phrase, "typographical errors". I don't characterise these as typographical errors.

  • It must be the mistakes made by the interviewers themselves, but what they wrote in there I haven't said that.

  • I see. So they have got it completely wrong, have they?

  • What they wrote in this document it is - no, it was not in 1986 and so there is a mistake in fact in the year.

  • Mr Camara, we haven't even got to any question about the contents of the document.

  • I am telling you that they have read back to the document to me. You told me to look at the documents. I looked at the documents, but the date is not correct.

  • Well, we will come to that in just a second. You were five years from the age of, what, 18, when you started in the gendarmerie until you left in your 24th year? You were [sic] five years' experience as a Military Policeman. That is what you have just told us. That is right, isn't it?

  • Five years, yes, from 1982 to 1987.

  • Do you have any idea how many years experience Mr John Berry, the Canadian investigator, has as a police officer?

  • I didn't even know that John was a policeman.

  • Well, you mentioned yesterday that - well, no, in fact you mentioned last week that you referred to someone who was between 50 and 60 as being an old person. Was Mr Berry - I am sorry, does Mr Berry fall into that category? Is he an old person? I don't know, I have never met him.

  • I don't remember saying that. I don't remember giving you Berry's age.

  • You didn't. I am saying you talked of people between the age of 50 and 60 being old. I am trying to get from you an idea of how old Mr Berry is. Would you describe him as an old person?

  • I don't think Mr Berry is an old person.

  • So, roughly how old do you think he is?

  • No, if I tell you what - how old he is I would be lying, but I don't think he is an old person. My age, more or less.

  • What age bracket would you put him in?

  • Right. 45 or 50 when he was interviewing you in 2006 and 2007?

  • 35/37 at that time.

  • Right, well he is reducing in age now. 2006 and 2007 was only a year and two years ago. Can we finish this by just - you just giving us a rough estimate of how old you think John Berry is now?

  • 35 to 45 I think, more or less. I don't know exactly how old he is.

  • What about Mr Haddad?

  • I think Mr Haddad is older than what is the other's name?

  • And was Mr Haddad a former policeman, or a serving policeman?

  • I don't know him as a policeman. They haven't told me their functions, no.

  • What about Mr Morris, who also interviewed you last year on a number of occasions. How old is he?

  • I don't know his age. Please don't ask me their ages. I don't know their ages.

  • Nobody is asking you for a specific age, but roughly how old is he?

  • Maybe also 35 to 45.

  • Right, thank you. Well, then let's have a look at what Mr Berry and Mr Haddad have recorded you saying in the first interview on 7 October 2006. The first page please - this is the page you have already looked at - 23626. They have recorded you saying:

    "Camara advises around 1986 he was in exile from his home country in the Gambia as he had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government"?

  • I haven't said that. I said 1987. I left The Gambia in 1987. In 1986 I was still in service.

  • So, you didn't tell them 1986. Did you tell them that you were in exile from your home country?

  • Yes, I think I have told them that I was in exile, but the date is not correct. In 1986 I was still in the gendarmerie.

  • Well, don't worry about the date. I have moved on to being in exile. Being in exile means that you are not allowed to go back to your own country, doesn't it?

  • But you left The Gambia, you told this Court yesterday, simply in order to improve your financial position, not because you were unable to go back. That is correct, isn't it?

  • I went into exile to improve my situation.

  • Did you tell them that you had gone into exile because you had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government? When you left The Gambia you did so because you had been involved with a group who had tried to overthrow the Gambian government, is that what you told them?

  • I think I told them that I was in exile, but I do not agree with the year mentioned in this document.

  • Mr Camara, we have moved on from the year. Please concentrate on the second line of that page. Would you have a look at it, please. You were in exile because you "... had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government". Did you tell them that, yes or no?

  • Yes, I think I have told them that.

  • Right, but that wasn't true, was it?

  • After I have said that, indeed.

  • No, what you said was not true, was it? You had not been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government? That was not the reason why you had gone into exile?

  • That was the reason, indeed.

  • You told us this morning - in the first questions I asked you, you told us that you had not left The Gambia because you had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government. I asked you in those very words that question and you -- [overlapping speakers]

  • I told you that I went to improve my situation, but in fact I was - I left also because of that tentative coup.

  • Well then why did you tell the Judges this morning, when you first started giving evidence, that you had not left because you had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government.

  • Mr Munyard, I may be oversubtle, but does "but also because of the tentative coup" automatically mean that he was involved in the tentative coup?

  • No, I am not asking that, Madam President. The words are "... he had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government". It is not time specific.

  • Yes, I am referring to his answer. His answer was, "I said to improve my situation, but also because of the tentative coup". It does not follow from that answer that he was necessarily involved in it.

  • No, I agree, but I was not pursuing that. If you want me to --

  • Very well. No, I don't. I am not going to tell you how to cross-examine.

  • I asked you a question this morning, Mr Camara, using those very words from the second line of your interview notes and you said, "No, I did not leave the Gambia because I had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government". You answered "no" to that question when I put it to you this morning first thing. Now you are saying, yes, that is part of the reason why you left. So why did you tell us the answer, "No", when I first asked you about that this morning?

  • I am sorry, your Honours. I went back up to what was said this morning and to the question, "You did not leave the Gambia after you resigned from the gendarmerie because you had been involved with a group who had tried to overthrow the Gambian government, did you?", the answer is said, "I never said that. I never did that". I don't think it is that clear.

  • Well, with respect it actually makes it more clear than I thought I had put it. "I never said it and never did it" could not make it any clearer.

  • What exactly is your objection, Mr Werner?

  • The question was not put as my learned friend just said he put it and the answer was, "I never did that. I never said that". I just want that to be clear. That is not the way my learned friend put it. If he wants to put it he can do it from the transcript, but that is not what he said.

  • Mr Munyard?

  • I am willing to accept that I might have - I might have phrased it slightly differently, I don't know, my question has not been read out, but the answer could not be clearer:

  • First thing this morning, Mr Camara, you were telling these Judges that you never said that and you never did that. In other words, you never said that you left the Gambia because you had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government, nor did you ever do that. You never left the Gambia because you had been involved with a group who tried to overthrow the Gambian government?

  • Sir, let me tell you something. I left with the intention to going to Amsterdam and if I have a problem on my way to Amsterdam there can be an accident for example. I didn't leave because of a coup détat. I went to improve my financial situation and it coincided with the coup détat.

  • Well, I am afraid I am going to have to explore that. When you say it coincided with the coup détat, what do you mean by the word "coincided"?

  • The coup détat was in 1981. I was in Gambia.

  • Mr Camara, what do you mean by the word "coincided"? I don't want to be unfair to you at all, English is not your mother tongue, but you just gave an answer to the Judges saying that - let me check it. "I did not leave because of the coup détat. I went to improve my financial situation and it coincided with the coup détat". What do you mean by that word "coincided"?

  • I said I left The Gambia for financial reasons in Libya. I happened [inaudible] in Gambia.

  • I am sorry, I missed that. I don't think the interpretation --

  • In fact, I happened to join a group which intended to overthrow the government.

  • Well we know that, but that was in late 1989, or depending on the version of evidence you gave yesterday in the middle of 1989. It was not when you left The Gambia.

  • That was years later.

  • I left Gambia in 1987, yes.

  • Yes, nothing to do with the coup attempt in 1981, nor was your departure from Gambia anything to do with you being involved with a group who had tried to overthrow the Gambian government, was it? It was purely for financial reasons?

  • I was trying to improve my own situation.

  • Yes, and your reason for leaving was nothing to do with the coup in 1981, nor was it because you were connected with a group who had tried to overthrow the Gambian government. That was not why you left the Gambia, was it?

  • I am not going to repeat myself again. I didn't leave Gambia in view of the coup. I left for other reasons.

  • So can you explain to us why when this particular sentence was read back to you by the investigators in October 2006 you didn't say to them, "You have got that completely wrong. Not just the date, but the reason why I left"?

  • It is your investigators - the investigators - who wrote this.

  • So, are you saying that they are no good at their job?

  • Exactly.

  • Now can you turn, please, to tab 2, which is the next divider, and the first page of that tab which is 25321. Again the date is backwards, but it is 3 November 2006, starting at 1615 hours, or quarter-past-4 in the afternoon, and you are being interviewed by the same two men, Mr Berry and Mr Haddad. This is called a clarification statement, although it is not actually a statement, "Clarification statement taken in reference to the previous statement provided on the 7th of October, 2006". And in the first paragraph if you count down four lines, can you go down four lines, Mr Camara, do you see halfway or two-thirds of the way across the page there is a sentence that starts, "It was in 1987 that he first left The Gambia after problems there ..."? Do you see that? I am just asking you about that part of that sentence at the moment. Do you see that, "It was in 1987 that he first left The Gambia after problems there ..."? Is that right that you left after problems in The Gambia?

  • What kind of problems?

  • Well, you have asked the question I was going to ask next. Did you leave The Gambia after problems there?

  • Yes, I said that I left Gambia and I gave you the reasons.

  • Right, financial reasons?

  • That is why I left The Gambia.

  • And there in that sentence you go on to say, "... and arrived in Libya some time in [September/October] 1989 after working in several African countries"?

  • Is that what you told the investigators in November 2006 that you arrived in Libya some time in September/October of 1989?

  • Yes, yes, I told them that. I arrived in Libya indeed around September/October 1989.

  • So, why did you tell the Judges yesterday that you arrived in Libya earlier than that?

  • I didn't say that. I didn't say that. I said that I arrived there around end of the year, July, August, September. I didn't give a specific date. I said around the end of the year.

  • I am sure Mr Werner will check to see the dates you gave when you were giving evidence yesterday, but can I start by asking you why do you describe July as being at the end of the year when for most of us it is bang in the middle of the year?

  • That was after the first six months anyhow, so it is in the last six months of the year. So it was obviously the end of the year, but I didn't give a specific where. I said around July/September. That is what I said.

  • You said - you said there - according to what the investigators wrote down and no doubt read back to you, you said you arrived in Libya some time in September/October 1989. Have they recorded that correctly?

  • It is the investigators who have put "sometimes" [sic], because I didn't give a specific date. I said, "End of the year". They are the ones -- [overlapping speakers]

  • What - I am sorry.

  • They are the ones who put "sometimes [sic] around that time", but I said, "At the end of the year".

  • Right, so they just invented September/October, did they?

  • They said, "Probably around September/October?", and I said, "Yes", but I didn't - I didn't know exact - the exact words. I said months. I just said, "Around at the end of the year".

  • You said, "Around the end of the year", they said, "Oh, what, is that September/October time?", and you said, "Yes"? Is that what you are telling us now?

  • They said "some time". They said "some time'.

  • What time did they say?

  • They said "Sometimes [sic] in September/October" and that is not specific at all.

  • Well it is specific to those two months, isn't it?

  • Yesterday you asked me and I said, "At the end of the year that happened, from July, August, September". Yesterday that is what I told you, "At the end of the year", but I didn't give you a specific month.

  • You gave us specific months yesterday, including July as you are telling us today, and Mr Camara let me ask you for the last time -- [overlapping speakers]

  • Mr Witness, please let counsel finish asking his question.

  • I didn't say that.

  • You told us yesterday that you had been in Libya for six months in Sabah before you went to Tripoli and met Dr Manneh. You also told us yesterday that you had been there in July. I will get the specific reference in a moment. I am going to ask you for the last time. July is not the end of the year by any stretch of the imagination, is it?

  • I didn't give the specific date of July. I said, "July, August, September", and they said, "Sometimes [sic] in September/October". I didn't say specifically July, because I haven't written down the month.

  • All right. So give us your final version, please. When did you arrive in the country of Libya?

  • At the end of the year. At the end of the year, but I don't know the specific month.

  • By the end of the year, which period are you talking about?

  • I cannot specify the dates. I just can say that it was by the end of the year.

  • So you arrive in Libya by the end of the year and you spend six months working at Sabah first of all, is that right?

  • They asked me how many months I stayed in Sabah. I said, "Four or five months". I cannot - because I didn't put the dates on record and so I cannot specify. I have spent three months at least in Sabah.

  • Yes, you told this Court yesterday you had spent six months working in Sabah. Do you remember that?

  • Yes, I do remember.

  • So if you arrived in the country of Libya at the end of the year and you spent the first six months working in Sabah, you can't have got to Tripoli until some time well into 1990, can you?

  • Your Honours, could the counsel be instructed to repeat his question?

  • If you arrived in the country of Libya at the end of the year and you spent the first six months working in Sabah, you can't have got to Tripoli until some time well into 1990, can you?

  • That is what you were just saying.

  • Mr Munyard, I just noticed that everything you said is not recorded simply because I think of some technical hitch in the booth. The whole of the question you put is not recorded. Something else is recorded.

  • Thank you, your Honour. I have just looked now. When I asked it the first time it was recorded because I have just read it back word to word to the witness for the benefit of the interpreter, but you are quite right. The second time I read that it has not come up on the screen. Shall I have one last attempt?

  • Mr Camara, if you arrived in the country of Libya at the end of the year and you spent the first six months working in Sabah, you can't have got to Tripoli until some time well into 1990, can you?

  • I didn't give any specific month. I just said, "By the end of the year". I said, "By the end of the year", and so you are the one making an estimation.

  • Well, with great respect to you, I am using your evidence of yesterday and your evidence today to try to work out when you got to Tripoli. Your evidence today is that you arrived in Libya around the end of the year. That is what you are saying today, isn't it?

  • By the end of the year.

  • Yes. So if you arrive there by the end of the year and you then spend six months working in Sabah, that means you can't have got to Tripoli until some time well into 1990, doesn't it?

  • I said, "By the end of the year I think it was some time maybe in December - end of November/December - I was in Tripoli. December - end of November/December I was in Tripoli. In fact, I was in Tripoli indeed at that time". I said, "By the end of the year".

  • So, what happened to the six months in Sabah if you didn't even arrive in Libya until the end of the year?

  • The six months I spent them in Libya and even those six months I didn't specify. It was just an estimation.

  • Right. Can you go back, please, to tab 1 to the first page again, page 23626, and if you count up five lines from the bottom of the page do you see the sentence that starts, "While in Libya ..."? Do you see that? Just answer "Yes" or "No", please, Mr Camara. Can you see that?

  • Yes, down?

  • Five lines from the bottom, if you start at the bottom of the page and then work up five lines, there is a sentence that reads as follows, "While in Libya during 1988 and 89 he met Charles Taylor and Foday Sankoh". Do you see that? Just answer "Yes" or "No", do you see that?

  • Yes, I see that sentence.

  • Did you tell the investigators that you were in Libya during 1988 and 1989?

  • I arrived in Libya in 1989.

  • Mr Camara, please listen to the question. Did you tell the investigators that you arrived in Libya during 1988 and '89, yes or no?

  • Why did you tell them that you had been in Libya during 1988 and 1989?

  • I said I arrived in Libya in 1989.

  • It may be me. Let me try and make it clear. I am not asking you when you arrived in Libya. I am asking you what you told the investigators when they were interviewing you for the first time in October 2006. Did you tell them that you were in Libya during 1988 and '89, or is that something else that they have got wrong?

  • I arrived in Libya in 1989. I entered Libya in 1989.

  • Last attempt. Did you tell the investigators that you arrived in - that you were in Libya during 1988 and '89? Did you tell them that?

  • No, I didn't tell them that. I said I entered Libya in 1989.

  • So they have got that wrong as well, have they?

  • '89 is correct, but '88, no.

  • So when they read that back to you, why didn't you correct that?

  • I don't remember them reading back that statement to me.

  • Well, we know they read back this interview to you partly because you told us yesterday that they did and partly because on page 3 it is perfectly plain that somebody is writing down what is being read back to you. So, is this --

  • I said I entered in 1989, that is correct.

  • So, another mistake by the investigators writing down 1988? Is it another mistake by the investigators?

  • Yes, it is possible.

  • Right. Did you tell them that while in Libya you met Charles Taylor and Foday Sankoh?

  • Yes, I said I met Charles Taylor in Libya.

  • And that is not true, is it?

  • When did you meet him in Libya?

  • I met Charles Taylor in around - around end '89. 1989.

  • Or was it 1990, as you told us yesterday?

  • I think so. It should be sometimes in 1990.

  • At the beginning, certainly.

  • And when you say "the beginning", how long does the beginning of a year last for you? We know the end of the year lasts about seven months. How long does the beginning of the year last?

  • I said December to January.

  • So if it is the beginning of 1990 it must be January 1990, agreed?

  • It is possible. According to my estimations, it is from December 1989 to January 1990. 1990, January 1990, according to my - according to my own estimations. Sometimes, yes, at that time.

  • Because yesterday you told this Court, "I saw Charles Taylor for the first time at the beginning of 1990". (And for anyone who wants the page reference of the transcript - sorry, that was on Thursday last week. It is page 3430)

  • Yes.

  • Now, do you know what day of the year Christmas Eve is?

  • Christmas? You said Christmas?

  • Do you know what day of the year Christmas is?

  • Yes, I do know that.

  • It is December 25th.

  • Thank you. And Christmas Eve is what?

  • If Christmas is on the 25th, Christmas Eve is the 24th.

  • Thank you. And do you know what was happening in Liberia on Christmas Eve 1989? Not that you were there, but did you hear from anybody?

  • Yes, I have heard what happened there.

  • What happened there?

  • It was on Christmas Day that the rebels entered Liberia.

  • And who was leading the rebels?

  • It is Charles Taylor who was leading the rebels.

  • And he wasn't in Libya in 1989, was he?

  • That is not true.

  • He wasn't in Libya from very early in 1989, and when I say "very early" I mean the first month of the year, January 1989 or thereabouts?

  • I am telling you we are on 1990.

  • I am asking you about 1989, Mr Camara. [Overlapping speakers] Please restrict your answers at the moment to 1989.

  • Mr Munyard, could you - just pause, Mr Witness. Could you avoid overlapping your voices, both of you.

  • I will try, your Honour, but I am trying to get him to answer the question I ask rather than to give a speech about a different point.

  • You can do that without overlapping, Mr Munyard.

  • Mr Camara, can you please restrict your answer to the question that I asked you which was that Mr Taylor was not in Libya in December 1989?

  • I said that Taylor, the one, the person you are defending, knows what I am saying. What I am saying, Taylor knows very well what I am saying. Taylor was at that time in Libya.

  • He was in Libya --

  • In spite of the fight in Liberia, despite the fight in Liberia, Taylor - Taylor left Liberia and went to Libya. Burkina Faso also.

  • I am talking about Libya. We will come on to Burkina Faso.

  • You are saying, are you, that he was in Libya in December 1989 leading into January 1990? Is that what you are telling this Court?

  • I didn't tell you that. You said - you were asking me if I have seen - when I saw Taylor in Libya. I told you it was between December to January 1990. That is what I told you. I didn't tell you that Taylor was there at that time, but I saw Taylor. I told you at what time I saw Taylor in Libya.

  • Well, I am not going to dwell on 1989 any longer. You say you saw him in January of 1990?

  • I said that I saw Taylor around from - around December to January, yes. I saw him with my own eyes.

  • I have moved off December. We disagree, Mr Camara, that he was there in December. Let's try January now. Is what you are telling this Court that Mr Taylor launched an invasion into Liberia on Christmas Eve 1989 and then popped back to Libya to meet with your leader and others just a matter of a few weeks later? Is that what you are telling this Court?

  • I am telling you I didn't say that Taylor came to Libya. You asked me when, at what time, I saw Taylor. I told you that I told - I saw Taylor at Mahtaba and that is where I saw Taylor with Dr Manneh. I went to see Dr Manneh in Mahtaba and I saw Taylor. I met Taylor in Mahtaba.

  • In January of 1989, just a few weeks after he started the invasion of Liberia?

  • I am sorry, your Honours.

  • I think you meant January 1990.

  • I am so sorry, yes:

  • In January of 1990, just a few weeks after he began the invasion of Liberia and then came to Libya to meet with your friend, Dr Manneh, and his band of a dozen or so Gambians. Is that what you are telling us?

  • I am telling you doctor came to - I don't know if Taylor came to see Dr Manneh, but I met him when I was in Libya. I saw him there in Libya. At that time, despite the fight in Liberia, Taylor went to Libya. If you don't know that, the one who is sitting next to you knows very well what I am saying. The fight in Liberia didn't prevent Taylor from going to Libya.

  • And who was with Dr Manneh and Mr Taylor when you say you saw him in either December or January?

  • The moment the time I saw him I was - I went to see Dr Manneh. I saw him with Dr Manneh and the day he left Dr Manneh - it is Dr Manneh who told me that the person, this person, is Taylor. So, I don't know why he went to Libya.

  • What were they doing when you saw the two of them together?

  • I saw them greeting one another. I don't know what they said. I told that already in my first statement.

  • We will come back to your statement. You saw them greeting one another, what, and then the man you were told was Charles Taylor then left, did he? Is that what you witnessed?

  • Yes, I saw Taylor with Dr Manneh.

  • Not a very long time. Not a long time, because they just discussed certain things.

  • Well, how long are we talking about? Two minutes, five minutes?

  • Maybe some time around five minutes, I think.

  • Right. And what were you doing there while these two men were meeting?

  • I just came to discuss some matters with Dr Manneh. I am an intelligence officer. I was the intelligence officer of the group.

  • So, you didn't actually meet Mr Taylor then. You just saw him with Dr Manneh for a few minutes, he left and Dr Manneh told you who he was. Is that right?

  • Yes.

  • I don't know what they discussed and I don't know what he gave him.

  • I just want to establish you didn't meet him that time. You told us yesterday that you saw Charles Taylor twice in Libya?

  • How long after this first occasion was it that you saw him the second time?

  • If I do remember, it was sometimes [sic] after that.

  • Well that follows, but how long after that?

  • It was not a long time. I can't tell you exactly how many days, but I think it was in the same year.

  • How long after the first time you saw Charles Taylor with Mr Manneh did you - was it before you saw him the second time in Libya? There is a big difference between days and some time in the year?

  • Not a long time. Not very long. Maybe some two or three days after that. Yes, I think so, if my memory serves me right.

  • And what was Charles Taylor doing on this second occasion?

  • I saw Charles in Mahtaba and he was - he was with my leader, but I don't know what he was doing there in Libya.

  • What was he doing with your leader on this second occasion?

  • I don't know what they discussed. I know that that is the day they met.

  • Well, where in the Mahtaba did they meet on this second occasion?

  • The second time it was in Mahtaba. It was before I went to see Dr Manneh. He called me and asked me to come and it is Alhagi who told him. He knows - he usually calls me and knows at what time I am supposed to be there. So, both times I saw Charles in Mahtaba at the reception.

  • At the reception in Mahtaba. That is the place that you saw him both times, is it?

  • Yes. At the reception, indeed.

  • Does the Mahtaba have a reception desk with somebody to guide world revolutionaries to their particular location?

  • If you haven't forgot my statement I told you that Mahtaba is just like a hotel - a hotel - so whatever is you find in a hotel you can find it in Mahtaba. There is even a library.

  • It has a reception desk, but I think in one of your statements you said it doesn't even have a sign outside saying what it is. Do you remember saying that to the investigators?

  • There is no sign board saying that "This is Mahtaba". It is just like an ordinary place, but if you - unless you get inside you wouldn't know that it is a hotel.

  • But all I want to know is where you saw Charles Taylor, how long you saw him for and what it was he was doing on these two occasions when you say you saw him in Libya. We have dealt with the first one. The second one you are now telling us it was the same location, the reception desk of the Mahtaba, he was talking again to Dr Manneh and then presumably Charles Taylor went away and you didn't see him again. Is that right? That seems to be what you are telling us.

  • Yes, I cannot deny that he was there.

  • Is what I put to you correct, Mr Camara, that you saw him on two occasions, both times at the reception desk, both times having a very brief conversation with your leader and then disappearing?

  • Yes, because when he leaves the reception he goes inside. I did not have access to the interior unless Dr Manneh himself takes me to his room, because in Mahtaba those who are resident to Mahtaba are the only ones who have access to the hall - to the interior, but if you are not resident there you cannot go inside.

  • And you never did stay there, did you?

  • No, no, I don't stay. I didn't stay there. It is the leaders who --

  • All right. Just let me be clear about one thing. Those were the only two occasions when you saw Charles Taylor in Libya. Is that right, yes or no?

  • Yes.

  • You never saw him giving anything to anybody?

  • No, in Libya I never saw him giving something to anybody.

  • Excuse me, your Honour. We have been advised by the technical booth that there is need for the co-counsel to pause after every question to allow the interpretation to be completed before the next question and that would ease the problem of overlapping microphones. Thank you.

  • I will certainly do that, your Honours. I regret to say it is probably likely to mean that this cross-examination will be rather longer in time.

  • But at least we will capture everything that you say, Mr Munyard.

  • I seem to have emptied the public gallery by making that comment, but there we are. Probably not for the first time in my career:

  • Right, next question. You didn't see him speaking to people apart from Dr Manneh at the reception desk when you were in Libya, did you? I am talking about Mr Taylor.

  • I saw Charles twice and he was with my leaders.

  • Mr Witness, that was not the question that counsel asked.

  • Apart from seeing him speaking to Dr Manneh, you never saw him speaking to anybody else in Libya, did you?

  • You are agreeing with me that you never saw him speak to anybody else, is that right? Are you agreeing with me?

  • I haven't seen him with anybody else.

  • Thank you. So, when was it in Libya that you met Foday Sankoh?

  • I saw Foday at the same time.

  • With Charles Taylor and Dr Manneh at the reception desk?

  • So, where did you see Foday Sankoh?

  • I saw him in Mahtaba.

  • I have access only to the reception in Mahtaba. It is mostly at the reception that you can see the people at Mahtaba.

  • I would like you to look, please, at tab 4 at page 38045, which is the second page in this tab.

  • Could you give us that number again, please, Mr Munyard?

  • Page 38045.

  • We don't have that under tab 4, or at least I don't.

  • I think you mean tab 5, don't you?

  • I am so sorry, I have mis-numbered mine, yes, or rather I have misread mine. 38045:

  • And this is an interview - this is an interview in May 2007, it is your fifth interview, and at the foot of page 38045 you see the last paragraph there which says, "The witness ...", that is you, "... was housed and trained in a structure in Tripoli referred to as 'Mahtaba'". We are talking about when you first met Dr Manneh and do you see over the page it says, carrying on the last line on page 38045:

    "The witness had previous military experience and so did not follow the same routine training as the others having already been trained. He stayed at Mahtaba whilst his refreshment training was conducted".

    Do you see that?

  • I have seen the paper.

  • Have the investigators correctly recorded what you told them in that interview that you stayed at and were housed at the Mahtaba?

  • I am telling you I said that I went to Mahtaba to see Dr Manneh - to meet Dr Manneh - and then to follow to have some certain weapon trainings at Mahtaba. I had that in Dr Manneh's room, because normally it is in Dr Manneh's room. I could have accessed Dr Manneh's room because he would sign me in and I had my training in his room - my arms training. That is what I told the investigators.

  • Go back to page 38045, the last paragraph, "The witness was housed and trained in a structure referred to as 'Mahtaba'", and over the page, "He stayed at Mahtaba while his refreshment training was conducted". Did you tell the investigators that you were housed and stayed at Mahtaba?

  • I think it needs to be at the --

  • Is there a problem, Mr Witness?

  • I said that I was not housed in Mahtaba. I didn't stay in Mahtaba. I just went there for my weapon training.

  • So, have the people who interviewed you got that wrong as well?

  • I just said that I went to Dr Manneh's room for my weapon training.

  • Have they got that wrong as well?

  • I had no room of my own in Mahtaba. The witness - this statement I never meant this witness, "The witness was housed". I went to Mahtaba to a room in Mahtaba, but I was not housed in Mahtaba and I said that in my statement.

  • Mr Camara, listen to the question, please, and answer the question. Have the people who interviewed you on that occasion got your answer wrong?

  • Yes, I think they have got me wrong.

  • So they weren't doing their job properly, is that what you are saying?

  • I didn't say that.

  • Well that is the effect of what you are saying, isn't it?

  • Everybody - everybody makes mistakes. You even made just a mistake a few minutes ago with the numbers of pages, so they can - they can - they must have made a mistake.

  • When it was read back to me --

  • Sorry, your Honours, the correct interpretation of that area is it is possible for each and every human being to make mistakes. Even you yourself, who is standing there, you called the number just now and you said "03405" and that was a mistake and then you said "Sorry". So, that is it. It is possible for everybody to make mistakes.

  • The mistake was the tab number, but when it was read back to me I agreed I had made a mistake. When this interview was read back to you, did you point out the mistake that the people interviewing you had made?

  • If they have made a mistake, I cannot say that they didn't do properly their job.

  • Did you point it out to them when they read back to you, "The witness was housed" and "He stayed at Mahtaba"? Did you point out to them they had got that wrong and that you never said that?

  • I don't know what they said. What I said, I know what I said.

  • Final attempt. Was this read back to you at the end of the interview?

  • It is possible that they have read it to me, but I don't remember. What I remember, I remember telling them that I had a training in Dr Manneh's room at Mahtaba.

  • That is not what this says, is it?

  • I didn't say that I stayed - I was staying in Mahtaba.

  • So, they have got that wrong. And if they read it back to you --

  • Yes, that is a mistake. Saying that I was housed in Mahtaba, that was a mistake. The rest is true.

  • And if they read it back to you you would have corrected that mistake, wouldn't you?

  • Yes, I would have corrected it.

  • Yes. And do you know who it was who got your account wrong on that occasion in May of 2007?

  • What I told, the way I said it, he made a mistake in saying that I was housed at Mahtaba, so that statement was a mistake. It is the term "housed" which is a mistake, but the rest - all the rest - is true.

  • Mr Witness, the counsel did not ask you about what was in the record. He said - he asked you who took the account?

  • If you see, look at the paper, I am sure you will see the person who took the statement, but I can't tell you.

  • Yes, turn back, please, to page 38044, and the two people who were there when you were questioned on that occasion were Mr Morris, the investigator, and Mr Werner, the lawyer over there who took you through your evidence on Thursday, Friday and yesterday.

  • You should ask them to know who exactly took down the statement.

  • I am going to move on from the Mahtaba in a moment, but can I just ask you who was trained at Mahtaba apart from your group of Gambians and Liberians and Sierra Leoneans?

  • I don't understand your question. Can you please repeat? Can you clarify it a bit?

  • I will clarify it. At the Mahtaba in 1990 and 1991 and quite possibly 1989 also, were there people there from the ANC, the South African freedom fighters?

  • No.

  • More likely 1989 than 1990?

  • No, no. Maybe, it is possible, but not to my knowledge.

  • Were there any people there from SWAPO, the South West Africa People's Organisation?

  • I don't think I have seen them. It is possible, but I haven't met them.

  • Were there any people there from Sumatra?

  • What is Sumatra?

  • Well it, or at least part of it, is in Indonesia in the Pacific?

  • It is possible, but I don't know. I don't know anything about that.

  • I am only asking you for the people that you remember seeing there. Do you remember seeing anybody there apart from Liberians, Gambians and Sierra Leoneans?

  • Yes, there were different types of revolutionaries. I don't know them but I have seen them, but we don't know - I don't know them in fact.

  • Right. Can you go back, please, to tab 1, and I would like you to have a look, please, at page 23627, which is the second page of tab 1. Do you have that in front of you, Mr Camara?

  • Yes. I have it in front of me, yes. Do you hear me?

  • Yes, thank you. We will start at the top. Here you say as follows:

    "That Taylor, Sankoh and Dr Mane did not stay with their men in the barracks but stayed in a place called Mahtaba which was like a hotel that housed various terrorist and Mafia people and crooks".

    Now pausing there for a moment, did you meet any Mafia people while you were at the Mahtaba?

  • At Mahtaba you could find any nationality in the world.

  • Yes, Mafia is not a nationality. Did you meet any Mafia people?

  • I said that Mahtaba is the house of crooks, in fact. Mahtaba is a house of crooks. I cannot specify any more.

  • I see.

  • There are all types of persons there. I have met all types of person in that place.

  • Well I would like to know how, please, if you never got beyond the reception desk?

  • I am sorry, your Honours, I object. He said that he went to the house to the room of Dr Manneh.

  • My learned friend is quite correct:

  • Was Dr Manneh's room full of Mafia people and crooks, or just you doing your training in his bedroom?

  • Dr Manneh was alone in his room.

  • Except when you were there doing your training?

  • Dr Manneh is the only person in his room. He is staying all by himself in his room, unless he hires - he invites people.

  • Did he invite any Mafia people or crooks into his bedroom when you were there?

  • Those who came there were Libyans. Those who found me there were Libyans.

  • In Dr Manneh's bedroom?

  • Yes.

  • Right. Libyan freedom fighters?

  • I don't know if they were freedom fighters. I really don't know.

  • Libyan weapons trainers?

  • Yes, [microphone not activated] arms and show it to people.

  • Madam Interpreter, we didn't get your full answer.

  • Okay, arms to show it around.

  • We still didn't get your answer.

  • They only brought arms and showed them to me.

  • So, where did you see these Mafia people and crooks?

  • I have met Dr Manneh. I am an ex-officer, not a suspect. I have seen all sorts of person in that place. I have asked him what those people were doing there. He told me that any people - all the people you - all the people you can think of, different type of people, you can find them in this place. There were some people who were experts in explosives and that is at that occasion also that I have known really what Mahtaba was; what was happening in that place.

  • So for the last time, please, can you help the Court with who the - how you know there were Mafia people and crooks staying in the Mahtaba? Was there a special queue for those people at the reception desk?

  • When you leave the reception, you go to Dr Manneh's room. His room is opposite the library, so you pass through all those places and when you enter you meet different people who know that you have seen them.

  • Do they tell you who they are? "I am a member of the Mafia", or, "I am a crook", or something like that? Is that how you have learnt this?

  • I know because of what Dr Manneh told me. When you stay in Mahtaba you become a revolutionary, or you are one of those terrorists, or something else, or experts in explosives, or - those are the type of people who used to stay in Mahtaba. You could even ask the person sitting next to you. Those are the types of people who stays at Mahtaba.

  • I am going to move on to training, but I see the time, Madam President.

  • I think that would be a convenient point to adjourn for the mid-morning break. Mr Witness, we are now going to take the mid-morning break. We will resume Court at 11 - excuse me, 12 o'clock. Madam Court Attendant, please adjourn Court.

  • [Break taken at 11.29 a.m.]

  • [Upon resuming at 12.00 p.m.]

  • Madam President, your Honours, for Prosecution Brenda J Hollis, Nicholas Koumjian, Shyamala Alagendra, Alain Werner and Leigh Lawrie.

  • Thank you, Mr Werner. I think you're in the same position, Mr Munyard.

  • As they say in general election reporting, no change.

  • Please proceed with your cross-examination.

  • Thank you, your Honour:

  • Now, Mr Camara, I want to ask you about this training that you undertook. First of all tell us about the training that took place in Dr Manneh's bedroom?

  • Actually, a very small point, he kept saying room. I couldn't work out whether it was a study, a bedroom, a suite or what.

  • I'll ask. In the light of what I know about the place I'll try and be more precise:

  • Mr Camara, Dr Manneh had an ordinary sized room in the Mahtaba, didn't he?

  • In my statement I already told you that there are hotel rooms. It's in the hotel room that we used to have the training.

  • Yes, and a hotel room is a bedroom, isn't it?

  • It's a bedroom. It's a bedroom.

  • With enough space for a bed and a wardrobe and not a great deal more space, do you agree?

  • Yes, indeed. A bedroom, a wardrobe for the belongings.

  • And what training were you doing in Dr Manneh's bedroom?

  • I had weapon training.

  • What sort of weapons were you being trained in in this bedroom?

  • Yesterday or maybe Friday, was it Friday, I told you that we had - there were arms there, the AK-47s, GMG and RPGs.

  • AK-47 is a rifle, GMG is a general machine gun, RPG is a rocket propelled grenade. Is that correct?

  • Yes, it is.

  • And for the benefit of anybody who doesn't know can you just describe, maybe by using your arms, how long an AK-47 is?

  • I cannot show you that with my hands.

  • How many feet long is it?

  • Maybe - no, I really can't give you - I haven't measured the rifle to tell you how long really it is.

  • Can you just look at me if I put my arms out tell me if I've got roughly the right measurement. I'm now holding my arms about that wide [indicated]. Is that too big?

  • No, it's not so long.

  • About that wide, that long, rather [indicated]. From the butt to the fire end of the barrel?

  • Reduce a little bit. Yes, maybe. Yes, maybe this length.

  • Madam Court Attendant has a tape measure and she'll now come and measure this distance.

  • It's an estimation because I cannot tell you the exact length of the AK --

  • We understand that, Mr Camara. Nobody's going to say it's exact. It's 77 centimetres, whatever that may be in inches.

  • About 30 inches, I think.

  • Thank you, Madam President.

  • Before we continue, please, there are two types of AK-47s. Some are the folding type. The others are not - are unfold, they are not folding. The unfolding one is approximately 77 centimetres.

  • The unfolding one, right. And does it follow that the folding one is actually bigger when you open it out?

  • Yeah, even if the - it's the same size, it's more or less the same, it's only the presentation which is different, otherwise --

  • General machine guns, can you help us with the size of a general machine gun?

  • They're longer than the AK-47.

  • Right. How much longer?

  • I haven't measured those ones also to tell you the exact length or dimension.

  • No one is asking you for exact measurements, Mr Camara, we appreciate you're just giving us a rough idea, but is it twice as long as an AK-47 or half as long again, just roughly?

  • The length, the size, it's bigger than the AK-47 and longer also.

  • And is it something that you hold in your hand or do you have to mount it?

  • The GMG, the GMG, it's somebody who is really quite strong can hold it in his hands, can use it, and the person who is not very strong should put it - I mean it should be --

  • It should be what, sorry?

  • Put on something - well, on the floor I think.

  • Is it designed to be used either mounted on something or carried by someone who is strong enough to fire it just by carrying it himself?

  • As I told you, somebody who is strong enough can hold it and fire with it and somebody - somebody who is not very strong have to station it somewhere and fire it.

  • Rocket propelled grenades, it's a form of rocket, isn't it, the weapon itself, and you put a grenade in it?

  • You - he knows - you should know the rocket propeller.

  • I'm just asking you to describe what a rocket propelled grenade looks like, how big is it, the weapon, not just the grenade?

  • If we're talking about in terms of diameter it's bigger than the GMG, but the GMG is much heavier.

  • The rocket itself, if you stood it upright on the floor how high would it reach from the floor?

  • The rockets, the bullets in the rocket is quite heavy.

  • Yes, it's a grenade, isn't it?

  • It's a form of grenade because it explodes.

  • So just go back to my earlier question. If you stand the weapon itself, I'm calling it the rocket, on the floor upright how high would it be?

  • It can - you can measure it on my arm, the one I'm showing you [indicated]. If the - it doesn't - it's not longer than my arm, my forearm in fact.

  • For purposes of record I will note that the witness has indicated by use from his extended hand to his elbow.

  • Yes.

  • Is this the perpendicular height, because that's what you asked and therefore is he indicating the height from the floor up to the tip of his fingers when he did that?

  • Thank you, your Honour, that's a point we'll need to clarify.

  • Your Honours, a clarification in that area. Your Honours, a clarification in that area. The witness said: If you fix the canister it is not as long as my forearm.

  • Sorry, if you put the canister on it it's not as long as your forearm or if you take the canister off it it's not as long as your forearm?

  • Yes, when you fix the canister on it.

  • When you fix the canister on it it is not as long as your forearm. Is that what you're saying?

  • It's as long as his - as my forearm with the canister.

  • With the canister fixed to it, yes?

  • All right. Now did you have training in any of those weapons when you were in the Gambian gendarmerie?

  • [Inaudible] those arms.

  • Madam Interpreter, we didn't hear the answer.

  • I told you that I already had a training when I was in the gendarmerie, a training in those arms so I know them very well.

  • Thank you. Why did you need more training on those weapons in Dr Manneh's bedroom in Libya?

  • No, I didn't tell you that. You thought that - they thought I didn't know those arms but I already had a training in those arms, so I just had a refresher course.

  • We're waiting for that last bit to be translated.

  • Is there some more part of the answer, Madam Interpreter?

  • Your Honours, the interpretation is: I already knew those arms so I never had wanted to take to take training in them again.

  • But you've told us you had refresher training in them in Dr Manneh's bed room in Libya, yes?

  • Yes.

  • I'm sorry, I'm not getting it at all on mine.

  • Madam Court Attendant, could you please assist counsel.

  • I'm on channel 1. I'm getting pretty well everything, but - I'm sorry, those last two answers were obviously interpreted and I just didn't get the last part of them:

  • Now there are two aspects to weapon training, aren't there, Mr Camara. One is how to look after a weapon and one is how to fire a weapon. Would you agree with that?

  • In Dr Manneh's bedroom how could you be trained in firing a rocket propelled grenade, for example, without causing serious damage to his bedroom and other residents of the Mahtaba?

  • It's - you just - you can teach the person without having to fire. The way the training in arms and the method of firing are different. The firing itself is another domain.

  • Let's take the general machine gun. The general machine gun you have to be quite strong to fire yourself, don't you?

  • So it's very important that you actually have training in firing it to see whether you're strong enough to fire it, would you agree?

  • I myself, I know I have the strength to hold a GMG and fire it.

  • So why did you need training in it?

  • I already told you that I knew those arms. I knew. I knew. I told you I knew those arms.

  • Tripoli had plenty of training bases in it, didn't it?

  • Tripoli is a training base.

  • There are a number of training bases in Tripoli where you could have gone for refresher weapons training, aren't there?

  • I told you in my statement that I had gone to some camps, training camps, for my training, for my further courses.

  • And I want to suggest to you that you never saw Charles Taylor at the Mahtaba at any time in 1989 or 1990?

  • You say 1989, that's what you were saying yourself. I never talked about 1989.

  • Mr Witness, that is not quite the answer to the question. The question was suggesting that you did not see Mr Taylor in 1989 or 1990.

  • What you're saying, but the one who is sitting next to you knows that I met - I saw him.

  • All right, could you have a look please at tab 1, the second page, 23627. Now you told us this morning that you only ever saw him twice just for a few minutes at the reception desk at the Mahtaba. Do you agree with that? Just before you look at the page, Mr Camara, do you agree that's what you told this Court earlier this morning?

  • Yes, indeed, I've seen him.

  • Well, I'd like you to look please four lines down on page 23627. You said to the investigators in that first interview:

    "That Taylor, Sankoh and Dr Manneh would attend the training and give encouragement to the men and see how things were going. When they did Taylor was always more vocal and got more involved in things than the rest. He was the big boss because he was more vocal."

    You didn't see him attending training, did you?

  • No, I haven't seen him.

  • So why did you tell the investigators that he would attend the training and was more vocal than the others if you didn't see that?

  • Maybe - they asked the question. They asked me if I had a training, I said yes. I've never said that he was more vocal.

  • Your Honours, the interpreter is finding it very difficult to follow along with the witness. May the witness be advised to speak in bits so that the interpreter can follow.

  • Mr Witness, all your answers are being interpreted. The interpreter needs to keep up with you, so can you pause between sentences and then continue. Thank you.

  • Those who interviewed me asked me questions i think on all those people, Sankoh, Taylor. They wanted my opinion and they asked me which one of them was more vocal. Charles Taylor was the most vocal of them. I said that because I knew. In my statements I said that Gambians who had training --

  • I missed a bit of the interpretation there.

  • -- in my absence.

  • Mr Witness, please pause. Could something be done about the interpreters in the booth, because whatever is going on it is interrupting the flow of what the interpreter is saying and we're getting bits of what she is interpreting to us and this is not good, it's not accurate. Sorry about that, Mr Witness, it's not your fault, but obviously there are more cooks than one.

  • Mr Munyard, I think where you missed some of the answer was in this place, the witness was saying, "In my statements I said that" and then there was something blipped out and then it resumed again with Gambians who had training.

  • So the part in between is what you've missed.

  • It is indeed, your Honour, thank you. I'll try and fill in the gap and I'll preface my question:

  • Mr Camara, in the course of your seven interviews that we have copies of you have from time to time told the investigators that, "Somebody told me this" and then you've told them what was said to you. You've also told them things that you yourself saw and heard. Do you agree with that; that sometimes you've been telling the investigators what other people have told you and sometimes you're telling the investigators what yourself have seen and heard. Do you agree?

  • Yes. Yes, I do agree. Sometimes I tell them - I report what I have heard, sometimes I tell them what I know.

  • And when you're telling them something that somebody else has told you they record that normally, don't they?

  • Yes, of course, they put it down.

  • Go back to the lines that we were just looking at:

    "That Taylor, Sankoh and Dr Manneh would attend the training and give encouragement to the men and see how things were going. When they did Taylor was always more vocal and got more involved in things than the rest."

    You're telling them there something you are claiming to have seen and heard, aren't you?

  • I have already answered that question.

  • I don't think you have, but even if you have please try again?

  • Okay, I'll repeat my answer. The investigators wanted to know my opinion, they wanted to know my - to have my opinion about Taylor, Sankoh and Manneh. They wanted to know, according to me, the most vocal of the three and I've found Gambians in Libya who had had trainings with them and that's how I came to know and that they told me that Taylor was the most vocal of the three. So what did you expect me to say?

  • I expected you to say, "Some Gambians I met in Libya told me that Taylor was the more vocal". Why didn't you say that to them?

  • I didn't say that because they just asked me my opinion. If they hadn't asked me my opinion I wouldn't have answered this way.

  • Do you agree that the way that is recorded by the investigators looks as though it's something you're telling them you saw and heard?

  • Yeah, but when they started interviewing me they told me that whatever I know, whatever I've seen, whatever I've heard I should tell them.

  • Did you ever tell the investigators that you knew Taylor was the boss just by watching the leaders as they came round to talk to you?

  • I knew and I have - people have told me.

  • Mr Witness, please repeat your answer. The interpreter seems to have missed what you said.

  • I've been told and I've heard also and I know - I know also myself, I know that he was the leader.

  • Right. I'll go back to my question now and try and answer that, please. Did you ever tell the investigators that you knew Taylor was the boss just by watching the leaders as they came round to talk to you?

  • Yes, I told them that Taylor was the boss because when they asked me who was the most vocal I told them it was Taylor.

  • Mr Camara, are you deliberately trying to answer only half of the question or are you having difficulty understanding the question?

  • You asked me - you asked me a question and I have given you an answer.

  • Did you ever see Mr Taylor with the other leaders as they came round to talk to you?

  • Yes, since I've arrived in Libya.

  • So this is more than two occasions of seeing him at the reception in Mahtaba?

  • I've seen Taylor at Mahtaba. I haven't seen him anywhere else.

  • Turn please to tab 2, page 25322. Do you have that?

  • Yes, I've seen tab 2.

  • And you have page 25322. I'd like you to look please at the third paragraph going from the top. It starts with the words "Camara advises". Do you see it? "Camara advises that he", and here is a typographical error, "that he knew Taylor was the boss just by watching the leaders as they came around to talk to us." Do you see that?

  • Yes, I see the sentence.

  • You are clearly telling the investigators there that you watched Mr Taylor as he came around to talk to you, aren't you?

  • I told you I've seen the paper.

  • That you're showing me.

  • Yes, now answer the question, please.

  • Mr Witness, did you hear the question?

  • Yes, I've read the sentence.

  • You were clearly telling the investigators there that you knew Mr Taylor was the boss because you had watched him when he came round to talk to you, weren't you?

  • This statement is not my Libyan statement. This statement is the Burkina Faso statement.

  • Right. Well, we'll go back to the beginning of this statement. Turn back one page, please?

  • Which page? This statement is not the Libya statement.

  • Page 25321, please. This is on 3 November 2006, the same two investigators as before, Mr Berry and Mr Haddad, and it's a clarification statement taken in reference to the previous interview of 7 October 2006. The first paragraph on that page deals with you going to Libya, doesn't it? I don't want to take very long about it, Mr Camara. I don't think there's any doubt that the first paragraph deals with you going to Libya?

  • Yeah, yeah, I've seen that part.

  • The second paragraph deals with the fact that training in Libya was done in groups and that you were part of the second group?

  • Yes, indeed, I was part of the Gambian group, the second group.

  • Yes, and that the first group had left Libya for Burkina Faso in late 1989 shortly after your arrival in Libya. Is that right? That's what that deals with, the second paragraph?

  • Yes, 1989, yes, indeed, the first group left Libya to go to Burkina Faso.

  • Over the page, 25322, the first two lines deal with the date that the second group that you were in left for Burkina Faso, do you agree?

  • The second group left for Burkina Faso in 1990.

  • The next paragraph says that you told them that the Sierra Leoneans you met in the training camps in Libya told you they were from Sierra Leone. In other words that's dealing with Libya again, isn't it?

  • Yes. Yes, I found some Sierra Leoneans in Libya, yeah.

  • The next paragraph, the one I've been asking you about, doesn't say that it was in Burkina Faso, does it?

  • This paragraph - in this paragraph it's about normally Burkina Faso.

  • Well, that's what you say. The next paragraph clarifies something that you said in the first interview about Small Boy Units and you make it clear that you were talking about the Liberian civil war period. Do you agree?

  • Yes. Yeah, exactly, it's about the SBU in Liberia.

  • Just to put that in context if we go back to page 23627 in tab 1, do you have that? Have you got that, Mr Camara?

  • On that page at the top of the page you're dealing with the Mahtaba in the first three lines. Then we've got the lines that we were looking at a short while ago, you telling the interviewers that Mr Taylor, et cetera, would attend the training and he was more vocal. The next paragraph says the training in Libya consisted of mainly infantry training and some heavy artillery training, so that's still in Libya, isn't it?

  • The next paragraph deals with advanced training and you mention RPGs, GMGs and other weapons?

  • The next paragraph says, "We were taught how to ambush, attack and retreat". Yes?

  • Yes.

  • The next paragraph says, "The trainers were all Libyan"?

  • So we're still dealing with Libya?

  • The next paragraph says, "Part of the training dealt with the use of the Small Boy Units"?

  • And you're talking in the first half of that paragraph of the training you received in Libya, aren't you, or so it would seem?

  • Yes, yes, I'm talking about the training I had in Libya.

  • Yes, training in Small Boy Units in Libya?

  • I didn't say that the Small Boy Units had a training in Libya. It was in my training schedule. Yeah, that's what I said.

  • In your training schedule in Libya?

  • Thank you. And indeed if we go over the page, the second paragraph over the page on 2368 refers to when you departed from Libya. Do you see that?

  • What did you say, please? That when I left Libya?

  • If we go over the page we can see that you then move on to when you departed from Libya. Do you see --

  • And if you go to six lines down you told the investigators: "Due to the political nature of the world at that time towards Gaddafi the groups were asked to leave Libya in 1989." Do you remember saying that?

  • Can the counsel repeat the last bit of the testimony?

  • You're still dealing with Libya by this second page of the first interview and you end telling them about Libya by saying: "Due to the political nature of the world at that time towards Gaddafi the groups were asked to leave Libya in 1989." That's what you told the interviewers in the first interview, isn't it?

  • Yes, I did say that.

  • Right. So that is the sequence of the first part of the first interview. If we go back to the second - tab 2 which is a clarification account of the first interview the interviewers, who are the same two men, follow the same sequence as the first interview, don't they, and they ask you further questions and you give them further information about each of those paragraphs in the same order. Do you agree?

  • I don't understand. I haven't understood your question. Can you please clarify.

  • In the first interview you gave the interviewers an account of how you came to be in Libya, what you did in Libya, what your training was in Libya, why you had to leave Libya and then you go on to deal after that with Burkina Faso, et cetera, in the first interview. Do you agree?

  • In the second interview the investigators ask you further questions in the same order as the issues that you dealt with in the first interview. Do you agree?

  • I don't remember that, because I don't remember if they've asked me in the same sequence as the first interview. I really don't remember.

  • I appreciate that due to the passage of time so let me try and help you as briefly as possible. The first part of the first interview you're telling them how you came to leave Gambia and meet Dr Manneh. Yes?

  • Yes, that's what - yes, exactly.

  • If you look at the first paragraph of the clarification interview that deals with how you came to leave The Gambia and meet Dr Manneh, do you agree, on page 25321?

  • Yes, exactly, I do remember.

  • In the first interview after talking about how you came to get to Libya you then mention meeting Charles Taylor and Foday Sankoh and their men. Do you agree?

  • Yes, I told them that I have met those people in Libya. The Gambians also I have met some of them in - I found some of them in Libya. It's when I left - the way I left Libya.

  • In the clarification interview the second thing you're asked about or the second thing you talk about is Sankoh and Taylor already being there when you got to Libya. So it's a clarification of the same subject from the first interview. Do you agree?

  • Yes, I do agree.

  • The next thing you're asked about in the first interview is training and the next thing that you're asked about in the clarification interview is training in Libya. Do you agree?

  • Yes. Yeah, I talked about my training in Libya.

  • In other words the clarification interview is following the same sequence as the first interview and when you're being asked these questions and giving the answers you gave at this stage of the second interview you're dealing with Libya, not Burkina Faso. Do you follow?

  • Which statement are you talking about? At which page?

  • Now pages 23627 in tab 1 and page 25322 in tab 2?

  • Let me look at those pages.

  • Sorry to intervene, but to be fair with the witness I think if this line of questioning will be pursued then the witness has to be able to at least read the entire statement because in page 25322 Libya is mentioned, but if you look at the last paragraph then we are in Liberia, Cobra Base Gbatala. Then if you look over at 25323, second paragraph we are in Libya and then the next page, 25324, we are back in Burkina Faso.

    So in fairness to the witness if the chronology is going to be put to the witness then the witness has to be able to read the entire statement because it's back and forth with the locations.

  • I completely accept that the witness must be able to look at the statements. However, what I am dealing with is sequence of questions. I accept that these interviews go backwards and forwards and all over the place and are indeed at times very hard to follow for that reason. But I'm not dealing with a chronology, I'm dealing with a sequence and the sequence that the investigators asked in the first interview on the face of it is being followed in the clarification interview.

    But if the witness wants more time to look at the statements then - sorry, they're not statements, they're somebody else's notes of an interview. If he wants more time to look at those then of course he must be given that time. All I'm trying to do is deal with this point as briefly as I can and I appreciate it's not brief at all.

  • Yes, I think counsel for Defence is actually putting a sequence, sort of blocks, but I agree if the witness does need time to read it to fully assess what's being asked then he should be given that time.

  • Can we ask the witness if he'd like time to read it. It may be that he does, it may be that he doesn't.

  • Mr Witness, do you first of all understand the way the questions are being put?

  • What's my opinion is he put the questions to me, but taking me from one statement to the other statement is really a bit difficult. If he wants to ask questions let him ask questions. If he tells me directly the amount of page and then he puts his question to me and from there he can take me to somewhere else, I think that would be easier for me. But taking me back and forth is a bit difficult. He should put direct questions to me and then I answer.

  • Mr Munyard, we'll allow the witness some time to read these particular excerpts and let us see if this will assist both him and yourself.

  • Certainly, your Honour. I'm in the hands of the Court.

  • Well, perhaps if you're going to refer to both statements you can ask your question and then pause while he reads the particular part of each statement.

  • Very well. Yes.

  • Yes, exactly. If he wants to put questions to me let him ask questions on one statement, but if he mixes up things are going from Burkina to Libya and back to Burkina. Let him put questions directly to me on specific points.

  • I think we'd already got through the first three sections of the first interview and seen how they'd been picked up in the clarification interview so I am going to move to the fourth line down on page 2367. Mr Camara, this is the first interview. You were telling the interviewers about the training in Mahtaba and in - sorry, about Dr Manneh, Mr Taylor and Mr Sankoh not staying with the men in their barracks but staying in Mahtaba and then you went on to deal with the training there in Libya and this is what you said, and would you like to follow it, it's four lines down on page 2367:

    "That Taylor, Sankoh and Dr Manneh would attend the training and give encouragement to the men and see how things were going. When they did Taylor was always more vocal and got more involved in things than the rest. He was the big boss because he was more vocal and better financially set than the rest, having better connections than the rest."

    Then you go on to say that the training in Libya consisted mainly of infantry training and some heavy artillery training and we've looked a few minutes ago at the rest of that half of that page talking about your training in Libya ending up at the beginning of the final paragraph on that page with the training that you had in Libya in relation to Small Boy Units.

    Now that is the portion of the first interview that I suggest you were being asked to clarify on page 25322 of the second interview and I'm just going to take you to the relevant paragraphs. The second paragraph which you've seen talks about you meeting Sierra Leoneans in the training camps in Libya. The third paragraph is the one that we're concentrating on at the moment:

    "Camara advises that he knew Taylor was the boss just by watching the leaders as they came round to talk to us. It was Taylor who would dash them (give them small money) and who was supporting us even then."

    Then there's something that Dr Manneh told you. The next paragraph deals with the Small Boy Units and you say in that paragraph that when you spoke earlier about Small Boy Units and their formation you were speaking about the Liberian civil war period. So that is the order in which you were being asked to clarify what you had been talking about in the first interview. Do you follow what I'm saying?

  • What you've said right now, I want you to put me questions. If you ask me questions I will answer.

  • All right. I'll ask you a question. Do you agree that in the second interview you are being asked to clarify the matters that you talk about in the first interview in the order in which you were asked about them in the first interview?

  • Yeah, I know that I answered the interview, but I don't know if it's the first one or the second one.

  • Would you like time to look at the passages in the first interview that I've referred you to before we look at the sequence in which you clarified your first interview answers when you were seen the second time?

  • I would beg of you to make things easier for me, please. Please tell me exactly what you would like to know. Show me the paragraphs or the parts on which you would like to ask your questions. If you have questions just put them to me. It would make things easier.

  • I'm trying to make things easier, I promise you. In the third paragraph on page 25322 when you tell the interviewers that you had seen Mr Taylor when he came around to talk to you and that it was him who would give you small money you were talking about Libya there, weren't you?

  • That's Burkina Faso. I'm talking about Burkina Faso. Our people who went to Burkina. Our people were with the Liberians there in Burkina.

  • One last time, go back to page 23627, please, in tab 1. I think you're going in the - are you going in the right direction there? Mr Camara, is it easier for you to read it on the screen or to read it from the document in front of you? Just tell us which is easier for you because the Court Manager will --

  • I can - I'd rather read it on the computer because if it's on the document I need my glasses.

  • All right. Well, I suspected that. Madam Court Attendant will put the relevant parts on the screen for you now. It's page 23627 and what you are dealing with in the first part of that page is the training in Libya, in particular Dr Manneh, Mr Sankoh and Mr Taylor coming round to see the men, that's to say attending the training and giving encouragement to the men, and then after training you go on - immediately after discussing training on that page you go on to discuss Small Boy Units. Do you agree?

  • This statement, I'm the one who made this statement. If you put questions to me then I will answer.

  • Do you agree that on the page we're looking at that you deal with training in Libya, Mr Taylor and the other leaders coming around to see the men and then you go on to deal with Small Boy Units?

  • Yes, I see what you're talking about. These are my words. Please ask your questions, I will answer.

  • Go back then to page 25322 which will be put on the screen now for you where you are being asked to clarify matters that you told the investigators about in that first interview that we've just looked at. Do you have page 25322 on the screen in front of you? There in the second paragraph you're talking about people you met in the training camps in Libya and in the third paragraph you deal again with the question of Mr Taylor and the leaders coming around to talk to the men and encouraging them or supporting them, don't you?

  • Yes, I see that part but you haven't put your question yet to me.

  • The question is: That follows the same order of the questions that you were asked in the first interview, doesn't it?

  • I don't know if this is the first interview or the second interview. I really don't know. I haven't identified it.

  • This is the second interview. If I've got that wrong you can be sure I'll be corrected.

  • Okay, I understand.

  • And my final point is: After dealing with seeing Mr Taylor when the leaders came round to talk to you you then go on to clarify what you said about Small Boy Units. Do you see that further down the page on 25322?

  • Yes, indeed, I see that part.

  • So the questions that you were being asked in the second interview certainly up to that point follow the sequence of the questions that you were being asked in the first interview, don't they?

  • You are the one telling me that this is the second interview. I don't know if it is the second interview.

  • Mr Camara, please rest assured that if I've got anything wrong here there is the whole battery of people in this room who can stand up and point out my error. Will you take it from me that unless somebody objects and says that I've met yet another mistake that I am correct?

  • Okay, okay, I believe you.

  • Thank you. So you weren't talking about Burkina Faso when you were talking about watching Mr Taylor with the other leaders. You're talking about Libya there, aren't you?

  • The statement I have given, I didn't say that Taylor came to me. I just said - you asked a question about the sequence, you asked that question and I answered.

  • Mr Witness, the question is not answered. Counsel is asking this piece about Mr Taylor coming and talking to you relates to incidents in Burkina Faso - sorry, excuse me, in Libya, not in Burkina Faso. Is that correct or not correct?

  • Taylor - when I had my training Taylor was not in Libya. The people of Taylor - Taylor's people moved, I did the training with his - with the first group. We're talking here about the first group. That's why I'm telling you to put precise questions to me. The first group which had a training is different from the second group, because we left Libya in two different groups, but when I came the others are already finished their training.

  • Mr Witness, you're still not answering the question. These incidents that you have described, did they occur in Libya or did they occur somewhere else?

  • Some parts happened in Libya, some other parts happened in Burkina Faso. But when he says that Taylor went to meet people, that was in Libya. And the other part about the SBUs is in Burkina.

  • Just a minute. I didn't understand that answer.

  • The SBU. Talking about the SBU. That part.

  • Mr Munyard, are you clear on that answer now?

  • No, your Honour, but I'm not proposing to plough this furrow any further. I don't know if his Honour Judge Lussick has had an answer to his question yet.

  • I think the interpreter explained it. The words I didn't hear were obviously SBU.

  • Thank you. I'm going to move on now if I may:

  • Mr Camara, you have completely invented seeing Mr Taylor in Libya, I suggest to you. What do you say about that?

  • I'm going to repeat myself. I've seen Taylor twice in Libya, in Mahtaba.

  • When you were first interviewed by the investigators did they ask you to tell them everything - all the dealings that you'd had with Charles Taylor?

  • I haven't had any dealings with Charles Taylor.

  • Let me put it more specifically in detail. These investigators were asking - they were investigating the activities of Charles Taylor and they wanted you to tell them what you had seen and heard him do. Is that correct?

  • Yes, yes, that's correct. What I have heard, what I have seen, what I have done, they wanted me to tell them all that.

  • Yes, they wanted you to tell them every time you'd seen Charles Taylor, didn't they?

  • Yes, yes, they've asked me and I told them that I have seen him twice.