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

  • [On former affirmation]

  • Good morning, Mr Taylor.

  • Yesterday at the close of the day I asked you - or, in fact, put to you that:

    "Even your Minister of Defence was aware of your involvement in the Cote d'Ivoire, isn't that correct?"

    That was yesterday's transcript at 33689. You asked:

    "A. What kind of involvement?

    Q. Aware that you in fact had sent your militias into the

    Cote d'Ivoire, isn't that correct?"

    And you indicated you were not aware that your minister was aware of something. "I don't know that as a fact."

    And then you were asked:

    "Q. Well, Mr Taylor, in fact he talked about that with

    you, did he not?

    A. My Minister of Defence never, to my recollection, had

    any such discussions about me sending men to la Cote

    d'Ivoire, no."

    You remember that exchange yesterday at the close of the day, Mr Taylor?

  • Yes, I do.

  • And then you were asked:

    "Q. In fact, when he talked with you about it you

    basically dismissed his questions, saying he did not

    understand certain things. Isn't that correct?

    A. I have no recollection of that."

    You are remember that exchange, Mr Taylor, yes?

  • And then I asked if we could turn to tab 55 in annex 3, and I would ask that we do that this morning. We see this is Frontline World, "Stories from a small planet: Liberia, no more war, May 2005". The caption is, "A political survivor, interview with Daniel Chea". And, Mr Taylor, that is a picture of Daniel Chea, is it not?

  • And if we could turn to the second page of this interview, please. If we could look at the fourth paragraph down on the page beginning with, "On the Ivorian issue":

    "On the Ivorian issue, when I realised that militia forces from Liberia were involved, I talked to him one day."

    And we will notice from the context above that he is referring to you, Mr Taylor.

    "I talked to him one day and I said, 'Look, before going into one area, you must have an objective, either military or political, and in this case, we have none. We have our own issues; we are under attack by LURD (Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy) forces.' And he said to me, 'Well, Dan, sometimes there are things you do not understand. There are too many things happening in this region, and sometimes you get consumed, and you can be assured that whatever it is will get under control.'"

    And then Daniel Chea goes on to say:

    "In most African countries, if you are assured by the Head of State that he's in control, that he knows what he's doing, if he tells you, 'Look, I will never do anything to harm my nation', you have to give him the benefit of the doubt."

    So indeed, Mr Taylor, your Minister of Defence talked to you about the involvement of your militias in Ivory Coast, isn't that right?

  • That is not right. This is an interview. No one knows who conducted the interview, no one knows this paper. My Minister of Defence, knowing that I was fighting a war, could not have said this to me at all. Daniel Chea never, never raised with Charles Taylor that in fact, he - it will be he had dispatched; he is the Defence Minister - militia to la Cote d'Ivoire when I am fighting a war to do what in la Cote d'Ivoire? Daniel Chea never told me this. I don't believe that this document is even authentic. I doubt it.

  • In fact, Mr Taylor, when he raised that with you, you told him that sometimes there are things you do not understand?

  • Madam President, I would ask that this be marked for identification.

  • The article in the Frontline World entitled, "A Political Survivor, Interview With Daniel Chea" of May 2005 is marked MFI-362.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, on 20 October, just two days before elections began in the Ivory Coast, presidential elections, you put out a press release calling for the OAU to send monitors, correct?

  • Now, Mr Taylor, you waited until this last date because you did not really intend that the OAU send monitors, isn't that correct?

  • Ms Hollis, no. I am involved in a process as a West African leader. I am only trying to play my mart by urging - I was not the only one. I urged the OAU at that particular time because of the conflict developing in one of the leaders in sharing border. I urged them, and in fact I think they already had some monitors en route, and this was just an additional urging, that's all. Not because I didn't want them to. That's ludicrous.

  • Mr Taylor, you waited until just two days before these elections were to commence so that you could have a public record for your request, correct, Mr Taylor?

  • Oh, counsel, that's totally, totally ludicrous again.

  • But knowing that it was --

  • But knowing that it was too late for that request to be enacted, isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • I don't know, that's just irrational thinking. To believe that a leader in the region trying to ensure security on his border asks for monitors, that it can be so cynically stated by the Prosecution that it's because I am trying to set a record, as though I know I am supposed to come to a court. No, Ms Hollis. I am doing it in good faith because I have interests in making sure that there is peace on my border. No, it's ludicrous to - it's so simplistic to think that way.

  • And Mr Taylor, on 26 October 2000, you issued another press release, and in this one you expressed deep concern regarding political events in the Ivory Coast, correct?

  • And you called for the exercise of restraint and the avoidance of violence, isn't that correct?

  • Which was a prudent thing to do, yes.

  • And yet, at the same time you were actively involved in the support of Robert Guei, isn't that right?

  • Nonsense, I did not support any candidate. I am not an Ivorian. Nonsense.

  • Mr Taylor, we looked yesterday at a document indicating that Robert Guei was in fact killed on 19 September 2002. After he was killed, there was a resurgence of fighting in the Ivory Coast, isn't that correct?

  • And you have testified to this Court that you were involved in negotiations in the last quarter of 2002 regarding this resurgence and fighting; do you recall that, Mr Taylor? This was on 24 August.

  • No, I'm not denying - well, I was involved at - by this time in the peace process, yes, but the resurgence in fighting started long before the end of 2002.

  • Mr Taylor, in this last quarter of 2002, there were a series of meetings related to this situation in Ivory Coast, correct?

  • That is correct.

  • And you took part in those meetings?

  • And while you were taking part in these meetings and putting on a public face that you were working for peace, in fact, you were actively supporting the conflict that was going on in the Ivory Coast. Isn't that correct?

  • You sent fighters to Ivory Coast to participate in this fighting?

  • You had senior commanders there to participate in this fighting. Isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • If we could please look at tab 6, annex 3, which is the Liberian TRC report, page 186. I'm looking at page 186, and if you could move to the bottom of the page showing 21 October 2002. This is a finding set out in the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission's final report, volume 2.

    "October 21, 2002: The incursion by Benjamin Yeaten, Joe Tuah, Edward Zamay, Joe Walloe, Osebeo Dehmin and Matthew Karn into the Ivory Coast on the mandate of Charles Taylor. The purpose of the incursion was to act as mercenaries for Philip Doh. A number of people died in the operation, including those who refused to sign on."

    Now that's correct, is it not, Mr Taylor?

  • That's total nonsense. Totally incorrect. This is an opinion of somebody that have not even been tested in this Court. Totally incorrect. Here is Benjamin Yeaten now incursion in la Cote d'Ivoire, the very Benjamin Yeaten on previous evidence here is supposed to be commanding our forces in Lofa. So this is total nonsense. Total nonsense.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, we've talked before about Benjamin Yeaten, we've talked about Joe Tuah. Who was Edward Zamay?

  • Edward Zamay is an Armed Forces of Liberia officer.

  • And had he been a part of your NPFL previously?

  • Yes, Zamay was one of the Special Forces.

  • And Joe Walloe, who is he?

  • Joe Walloe is one of the senior commanders and served as Deputy Minister of Defence for LURD that was attacking me. So I don't see how I could have sent him, who was my enemy fighting me - Joe Walloe is - in fact, he served as Deputy Minister of Defence during the transitional government from LURD. This is a LURD commander.

  • During the transitional government, when was that, Mr Taylor?

  • During the time of Gyude Bryant. That starts in, what, 2003, late 2003.

  • And here we are looking at 21 October 2002, correct, Mr Taylor?

  • Well, he surely switched. He was fighting me from 1999, wouldn't that be really silly that a commander from LURD switched. Fought for me on my instruction, then went back to LURD and became Deputy Defence Minister. It's silly. No such thing happened.

  • "Osebeo Dehmin" here, we've talked about an Ocebio Dehme or Demby, correct, Mr Taylor?

  • And who was that?

  • Ocebio Dehme is an SSS person, chief of protective security that never left the President's side. He was responsible for my personal security. Could not, did not ever leave me. He was a Secret Service personnel.

  • And, Mr Taylor, had he been a member of the NPFL?

  • Yes, Ocebio was a part of the NPFL.

  • Was he one of the Special Forces?

  • Where was he trained?

  • And Matthew Karn?

  • I don't know him. I have never heard the name before.

  • Madam President, I would ask that this be marked for identification.

  • Normally we have been marking pages 1 and the page in question. What should we do, just this one page?

  • It is page 186. I believe yesterday the page before that, page 249 was marked for identification. This would be one page, 186.

  • We normally would mark the cover page as well.

  • And the cover page would be the cover page.

  • Because, you see, we are taking these pages piecemeal. That's why we have always included the cover page.

  • And that would be appropriate at this point, to include a cover page, since it is a separate exhibit.

  • Mr Griffiths, you are on your feet.

  • Madam President, can I make this inquiry? In marking that page, am I right in believing that it's only that paragraph on the page which is being marked?

  • We are marking the entire page, but when it comes to tendering into evidence, that's a different matter.

  • I think I'm correct in that, Ms Hollis.

  • That is correct, Madam President.

  • So in which case I will mark the one page. Page 186 of the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission report is MFI-363.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • Mr Taylor, this fighting that was ongoing in Ivory Coast after the killing of Robert Guei, two groups emerged in the west of Ivory Coast to attack Danane on 28 November 2002. Isn't that correct?

  • I have no knowledge of the groups in la Cote d'Ivoire or when they attacked, how they attacked. I am not aware of their functions at all.

  • And, Mr Taylor, these two groups were Mouvement Populaire Ivoirien du Grand Ouest, or MPIGO, and Mouvement pour la Justice et la Paix, or the MJP. Correct, Mr Taylor?

  • I have no idea. I have to take your word for that, that those groups existed. I do not - I am not following the various groupings in la Cote d'Ivoire.

  • And, Mr Taylor, in fact you knew of the existence of those groups because you were supporting those groups. Isn't that correct?

  • Indeed, Mr Taylor, the leader of MPIGO was a person by the name of Felix Doh. Isn't that correct?

  • I have heard that testimony here, I did not know him. I have heard that testimony here in this Court.

  • And, in fact, he was in your country in exile from the time Robert Guei was ousted from power in 2000. Isn't that correct?

  • I have no idea. I did not know him. He could have very well been in Liberia, I wouldn't know, but I didn't know him as the leader of any group.

  • But indeed, Mr Taylor, he was in Liberia with your knowledge and approval. Isn't that right?

  • And, Mr Taylor, MPIGO was the group that Sam Bockarie and his men joined and actively supported until the killing of Felix Doh. Isn't that correct?

  • Well, I don't know. From evidence here, let's not forget Sam Bockarie came from Burkina Faso into la Cote d'Ivoire and not from Liberia. I have no idea of the inter-workings of the Ivorian crisis except from a general point in dealing with stability on my border. That's all.

  • Mr Taylor, you had indicated that you were involved in a series of meetings about the situation in Ivory Coast in the last quarter of 2002, but you are telling the Court that you don't know the different groups that were involved?

  • No. Counsel, let's be - when you are getting into names and - la Cote d'Ivoire is not my problem, except for security. So when you begin to ask me about specific names of groupings and different things, I do not deny before this Court that they may have existed. I am telling you I don't know specifically there is one, two, three, groups, their name is this; I don't know them. I know groups existed, that's what I am saying. I don't know the workings of them.

    And by the way, for these judges, I participated even before 2002 because I can remember when the conflict first started I went and met with Gbagbo before the death of Guei when South Africa and Nigeria were threatening to invade and finally went to Nigeria and stopped the intervention. So I was involved in that process for long before the end of 2002.

  • Are you finished, Mr Taylor?

  • Now, Mr Taylor, I would ask that we look at tab 3 in annex 3. We looked at that yesterday. This is the ICG report, 30 April 2003, "Tackling Liberia: The eye of the regional storm". This has been marked as MFI-361. If we could go to page 16, please. If we could look at the right-hand column, the second full paragraph from the top beginning "Guei's murder" and if we could look at the second sentence in that paragraph:

    "Following his death, Guei's Yacouba supporters in Man and Danane announced the country would see in 45 days after the period of mourning how the people of the west would react. On 26 and 27 September, Taylor's notorious general, 'Jack the Rebel', reportedly came on a 'tour' of Danane. Liberian refugees told ICG that a number of Gio from Liberia were going back and forth to 'spy' on the situation in Cote d'Ivoire following the attempted coup. Liberians in Nimba County said that their countrymen recruited for the Ivorian operation were trained in Belegaly, the home of Taylor's front line commander Roland Duo, as well as Ganta.

    The attacks into Cote d'Ivoire took two months to unfold. At least 500 fighters from Taylor's former NPFL rebel group, from the Sierra Leone RUF and 'able bodied men and women trained in Nimba County' apparently crossed into Danane to join fighters that had been loyal to General Guei. Liberians in Nimba County reportedly saw Taylor's commanders Benjamin Yeaten and Roland Duo take truckloads of Liberian fighters recruited in Nimba County to Danane late at night every week following Guei's death. A pick-up truck believed to belong to Kuku Dennis was also seen carrying recruits to Danane.

    Two Ivorian rebel groups, the MPIGO and the MJP, emerged to attack Danane on 28 November 2002. Eventually, the MJP headed toward Man, while the MPIGO went on to capture Blolekin, Touba, and the south of Toulepleu. The compositions of MPIGO and MJP remain unclear. Several sources state the former is largely comprised of Guei loyalists and Liberians as well as Sierra Leone fighters. Most observers present in the area at the time and shortly thereafter claim that MJP, the smaller of the two, is a satellite of the northern-based MPCI, but does indeed include Liberian and Sierra Leonean fighters.

    MPCI commanders and materiel were identified by eyewitnesses in Man in early December. Travellers in the region held by the MJP note that MPCI and MJP laissez-passer are interchangeable, but both often pose problems at MPIGO checkpoints on the road to Danane. In any case, it is clear that both movements have many Liberian and Sierra Leonean fighters, as well as mercenaries of various West African origins.

    It is less clear how much control Monrovia wields over military operations. The western rebels could not have launched their attacks from Liberia without Taylor's consent. The MJP would have needed a significant quantity of weapons to intervene, probably more than it could have gotten from the MPCI alone. The timing of those MJP attacks in Danane and Man coincide with the arrival in Liberia of six cargo aircraft containing 200 tons of weapons and ammunition. As mentioned earlier, Taylor's troops would have used those old Yugoslav stocks to repel the LURD in northern Liberia, but some may well have been passed on to the Ivorian rebels. In a recent report, Global Witness pointed to numerous arm movements in December 2002 from Harper port in Maryland County to the training camps in the River Gbeh region under the control of Taylor's chairman of joint security in the southeast of Liberia, General William Sumo."

    Now, Mr Taylor, it is correct that your fighters were sent to la Cote d'Ivoire to be involved in the fighting there, is it not?

  • I disagree with everything that you have read here. I disagree with this. This opinion by this writer - and if you were to attempt to get specific I guess the judges would have a better understanding, but I know you wouldn't. I disagree with everything that is written here. It is warped. It is totally incorrect, everything that you have read.

  • Now, if we could also look back at tab 52 in annex 3, please. This is the ICG report of 28 November 2003, "Cote d'Ivoire: The war is not yet over". We see on the overhead, "Cote d'Ivoire: The war is not yet over", 28 November 2003. If we could turn to page 18 of that report. It is captioned, "The wild, wild west". We are looking at the right-hand column?

    "Apart from enabling both sides to arm and recruit, the ceasefire and negotiation process after October 2002 also saw the opening of a new front in the west. Two additional organisations, MPIGO and the MJP, appeared with the direct assistance of Liberia's then President, Charles Taylor, thus further regionalising the conflict.

    Taylor and Burkina Faso's Compaore had been close allies in many previous coups, wars and destabilisation campaigns, from the murder of Burkina Faso's President Thomas Sankara in 1987, through the creation of war zones in Liberia and Sierra Leone in the 1990s, to attacks on Guinea at the start of the present decade. For these reasons, many observers wondered whether MPCI, MPIGO and the MJP might not all represent another chapter in this relationship. However, although there were elements of cooperation between the three anti-government movements, MPIGO in particular was intended as a strategic buffer force to protect Taylor against what he considered to be a threat from the creation of an MPCI-held zone in northern Cote d'Ivoire."

    So, Mr Taylor, again, it is correct, is it not, that MPIGO and MJP received direct support from you?

  • That total thing you read is totally incorrect. Totally.

  • And it is correct, is it not that, MPIGO in particular was intended by you as a buffer force to protect you from a potential threat from the creation of an MPCI-held zone in northern Cote d'Ivoire?

  • That's totally nonsense. Totally incorrect.

  • If we look at the next paragraph."

    "MPIGO was from the outset organised by some of Taylor's most senior commanders, including Kuku Dennis, Adolphus Dolo and the late Jack the Rebel. Ivorians in MPIGO included many of the late General Guei's men, while the majority were Liberian and Sierra Leonean fighters. MPIGO's official leader, (Felix Doh) real name: N'dri N'guessan, had been in exile in Liberia since Guei was ousted from office in Cote d'Ivoire in 2000."

    Now, Mr Taylor, you were aware that Felix Doh was MPIGO's official leader. You were aware of that were you not, Mr Taylor?

  • As being the - from reports yes, that - I remember Felix Doe's name being called as a leader of a rebel group. I am not sure if it's MPIGO. All I knew is that he was one of the rebel leaders in la Cote d'Ivoire.

  • And did you know him by the name N'dri N'guessan?

  • Mr Taylor, it is also true, is it not, that MPIGO was organised by your senior commanders, including Kuku Dennis, Adolphus Dolo and Jack the Rebel?

  • That would be total nonsense. That would impossible. I would - I mean, this is something that I would emphatically say that no such thing - how would Liberians struggling to fight a war - can't even win a war against LURD - go and form and send men to different - this is nonsensical. No.

  • That was the question your Defence Minister asked of you, isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • He never asked that. And I think you had an opportunity to bring Daniel Chea here if you felt that that evidence was substantial to your case.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, we will go on.

    "The Sierra Leonean warlord Sam Bockarie and his forces actively assisted MPIGO until just after the killing of Felix Doh in late April 2003."

    And that is correct, is it not, Mr Taylor?

  • If what is correct?

  • Mr Taylor, I just read it to you.

  • "The Sierra Leonean warlord Sam Bockarie and his forces actively assisted MPIGO until just after the killing of Felix Doh in late April 2003."

    Mr Taylor, it's correct, is it not, that Sam Bockarie and his forces actively assisted MPIGO?

  • No. Listen, I will answer the question.

  • [Overlapping speakers].

  • I will answer the question. Sam Bockarie came from your witness Jabaty Jaward from Burkina Faso. I didn't send him from Burkina Faso, number 1. Number 2, I don't know the different settings of name, who is MPIGO and what is what. I do know that Phillip Doh gets killed and that's when Bockarie tries to enter Liberia. The point that I'm trying to make before the Court is that I don't know the specifics of the groupings, who was what. I knew Phillip Doh was a rebel leader, but for what group, I don't know.

  • Did you say Phillip or Felix? What did I hear?

  • Felix. Well, it's supposed to be Felix. Felix Doh was a rebel leader in la Cote d'Ivoire, but I don't know the rebel group he headed.

  • Mr Taylor, you knew that Sam Bockarie and the men you had sent to join him were fighting with Felix Doh. You knew that, didn't you?

  • That is totally incorrect. I did not send anyone. You asked two questions. Number 1, I did not send anyone to fight in la Cote d'Ivoire. That's period. I didn't.

  • Mr Taylor, you knew that Felix Doh was killed in late April 2003, isn't that correct?

  • Well, I know Phillip Doh was killed. I am not sure if it was late April, but he was killed somewhere in 2002 - in 3, early.

  • Next paragraph:

    "Although the relationship between Charles Taylor and Blaise Compaore had ebbed and flowed, the presence of troops loyal to Charles Taylor in the west of Cote d'Ivoire demonstrates the continued collaboration between Taylor and Compaore in regional destabilisation."

    And, Mr Taylor, you did continue to work with Blaise Compaore toward regional destabilisation, did you not?

  • Totally - total nonsense. Total nonsense.

  • And if we continue: "From the December 1999 coup onwards" - and, Mr Taylor, this is the coup that first brought Robert Doe to power, isn't that - Robert Guei to power in la Cote d'Ivoire, isn't it?

  • Well, the way the question is put, I don't know what you want me to say.

  • The December 1999 coup that it refers to here, this is the coup that brought Robert Guei to power, isn't it?

  • Well, you've been very technical here. I am not sure if this is the coup that this particular paragraph is referring to, but I agree that it says it from December 1999 coup upward. Now, whether it is referring to that coup, I can't say specifically that is true.

  • Well, if we define ourselves to Cote d'Ivoire. How many coups were there in December 1999 in Cote d'Ivoire?

  • Well, if your question is about la Cote d'Ivoire in December '99, I would say yes.

  • -- came to power through the coup in December 1999 in la Cote d'Ivoire, correct?

  • "From the December 1999 coup onwards, Taylor and Compaore gradually developed divergent interest in Cote d'Ivoire. Taylor became an ally of General Guei, leader of the Ivorian military junta in 1999-2000; their relations dated back to the early 1990s, when Guei, as a senior army officer, had supported Taylor's war effort from rear bases inside Cote d'Ivoire."

    And it is correct, is it not, Mr Taylor --

  • -- that in the early '90s Guei, as a senior army officer, supported your war effort from rear bases inside Cote d'Ivoire?

  • That's a black, black, lie. Never did any officer in la Cote d'Ivoire called Guei Robert support me in any way. That's a black lie and this man is dead. It's a lie.

  • And it goes on:

    "Taylor continued to help Guei when the latter, after losing power in 2000, retreated to his fiefdom close to the western border with Liberia."

    And it notes here:

    "Guei, himself a Yacouba, recruited fighters from that group's ethnic cousins, the Gio of Liberia, who formed the main element of Taylor's own armed forces. Guei's private force in Gouessesso near Man included many Liberians and Ivorian soldiers who trained in Liberia in 2000-2001."

    Mr Taylor, you were involved in the training of these men in Liberia in 2000 to 2001, weren't you?

  • No. The fact of the matter, for the benefit of Court, there were Ivorians that fought in Liberia. I have told this Court that Ivorians fought in Liberia --

  • I am simply going - I am sorry to interrupt you, but they are talking about --

  • -- they are talking about:

    "Guei's private force in Gouessesso near Man included many Liberians and Ivorian soldiers who trained in Liberia in 2000 to 2001."

    So the sentence is not talking about Ivorians fighting in Liberia, but Liberians and Ivorian soldiers who trained in Liberia in 2000-2001. Mr Taylor, it is correct, is it not, that you were aware of these Ivorians training in Liberia in 2000 to 2001?

  • No, I was not aware. If you put it that way, I would say no.

  • Indeed, Mr Taylor, it was your people who were training them, isn't that correct?

  • In 2001 there would be no way I would be training when I am fighting. It is a lie. Now, because this record could be coming in the future for the Court, because I know I'm going to be confronted with it, the fact that there are Liberians, Yacoubas, Gios fighting in la Cote d'Ivoire is a fact. It is a fact that there were Liberians because of family and cousins that were fighting, number 1. Number 2 - because I don't want to deceive these judges that I was not aware of some of these difficulties. Number 2, Ivorians fought in Liberia during the civil war. After the war, I packed them up and took them to President Houphouet-Boigny. Houphouet-Boigny integrated them into the gendarme and the army because they were trained.

    Now, we heard that some of these people, okay, were fighting in la Cote d'Ivoire. They were Ivorians. So this person giving his opinion doesn't know the details. Along that border we were concerned that Gios, which dominate Nimba County, were going in and out, and we tried to stop it. So it's good for that record to be put on the record now before later someone says, Well, Mr Taylor you say you didn't know anybody was fighting in la Cote d'Ivoire.

  • Mr Taylor, are you finished?

  • Now that you have made your additional comments that go beyond the question, Mr Taylor, in fact, these Ivorians that were fighting in Liberia were fighting on your side of that conflict in Liberia, weren't they?

  • What time period are you talking about?

  • Well, the one you just talked about, Mr Taylor?

  • You just talked about Ivorians fighting Liberia.

  • Well, I want to get your question for the record. What time are you speaking about?

  • Well, Mr Taylor, let's go back to what you said. "Number two, Ivorians fought in Liberia during the civil war." Now, you just said that. These Ivorians fighting in Liberia during the civil war were fighting on your side of that conflict, weren't they?

  • Well, then I will be specific since you choose not to. Between 1980, okay - 1990 up until the time of my election as President, there were Ivorians, Yacoubas with their families that fought that we assembled and sent back. That's the period, yes.

  • Mr Taylor, that's not my question. These Ivorians you are referring to fought on your side of that conflict in Liberia. Isn't that correct?

  • I have given you the period and I am saying during that period, yes.

  • Mr Taylor, I would rather you answer directly. The question is: Did they fight on your side? Were they fighting on your side? Not were they fighting. Were they fighting on your side, that was the question.

  • During the period, your Honour, yes. During the period that I mentioned, yes, and I am being specific because I know later she - excuse me - counsel will say, well, she - counsel may extend it beyond a particular period and I want to be very earnest with this Court that this period between '90 up until my election, Yacouba's from la Cote d'Ivoire do fight along with my forces, yes, your Honour.

  • Mr Taylor, that question of mine to you was premised on your language which is at page 25 of my LiveNote. "Number two, Ivorians fought in Liberia during the civil war." That was your language, Mr Taylor.

    Now, Mr Taylor, these Ivorians that fought on your side during this time period, where were they trained?

  • And who trained them?

  • The NPFL - they trained along with the NPFL.

  • And how long did they train in Liberia?

  • And how many of them were there?

  • There were approximately 200 Ivorians that we returned. Now, I don't know the exact number. 200 that I took back to Houphouet-Boigny.

  • Now, let's go back to page 19 of this report that we are on, the last sentence of the top paragraph:

    "Compaore, on the other hand, was increasingly identified in Ivorian politics with Alhassane Ouattara."

    Mr Taylor, we discussed yesterday that Alhassane Ouattara was in fact excluded from the elections that had taken place in late October 2000, yes, Mr Taylor?

  • Yes, Alhassane Ouattara was excluded, to the best of my knowledge, yes.

  • The next paragraph:

    "The early days of the rebellion developed into a strategic threat for Taylor after MPCI declared a unilateral ceasefire on 17 October 2002 following the seizure by government troops of Daloa, in the heart of cocoa country, with help from Angolan fighters. First, he lost his closest Ivorian ally when General Guei was murdered on 19 September 2002. Secondly, he received information that the MPCI was recruiting Liberian combat veterans from refugee camps in Ghana, including some whom he considered as enemies."

    And then if we move down:

    "Taylor learned of a meeting in early November 2002 between MPCI leaders, including IB Coulibaly and his brother Ishmael; a close military aide to President Compaore; a dissident from Guinea; Sam Bockarie from the Sierra Leonean RUF; and at least one former fighter from Taylor's own forces. This group hatched a plan to launch a three-pronged attack on Danane, San Pedro and Abidjan in December 2002, and to use the territory they secured to restart wars in Sierra Leone and Guinea. Alarmed not least by the number of Liberian opponents that MPCI had under arms, Taylor established MPIGO to protect him from MPCI intrusion."

    Now, Mr Taylor, you learned about Sam Bockarie having these meetings with MPCI, did you not?

  • No. That's what makes this whole document silly. Taylor learned? Somebody is speaking for me. I did not learn or know - how would somebody know what I learned, except I told him. Is he saying I told him that I learned? It's total nonsense.

  • In fact, Mr Taylor, you learned about this meeting because Sam Bockarie himself told you about the overtures that had been made to him. Isn't that correct?

  • Ms Hollis, I am afraid we have to adjourn at this stage. We are just up to about our time and we will reconvene at 12 o'clock.

  • [Break taken at 10.20 a.m.]

  • [Upon resuming at 12.00 p.m.]

  • Good afternoon. Ms Hollis, please continue.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • If we could please return to number 52 - tab 52 in annex 3, "The war is not over yet". We were at page 19 of that document. If we look at the right-hand column, the first full paragraph that begins on the fourth line down from the top:

    "Thirdly, Taylor was threatened by President Gbagbo's own recruitment of Liberian exiles in the form of Krahn wing of LURD which later hived off into a new movement, MODEL."

    Mr Taylor, it's true, isn't it, that this is another reason that you actually had subordinates fighting in Ivory Coast?

  • No, I never had subordinates fighting in Ivory Coast.

  • Madam President, I would ask that this document be marked for identification, the document at tab 52 in annex 3.

  • Yes, Madam President.

  • The ICG Africa report number 72 and the article entitled "The war is not yet over", dated 28 November 2003, is MFI-364.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • Mr Taylor, we've talked before about Fawaz brothers in Liberia. Do you recall that?

  • You indicated that they were businessmen in Liberia?

  • And Liberian descent if not nationality?

  • And that they were of Liberian descent if not of Liberian - excuse me, of Lebanese descent, if not, Lebanese nationality?

  • I believe it was in relation to at least one of the Fawaz brothers or all them that you indicated you weren't sure if they may have been Liberian nationals. Is that correct?

  • I don't - they could not have been - they were born in Liberia. They could not have been Liberian nationals.

  • Ms Hollis, what brothers?

  • Fawaz, F-A-W-A-Z:

  • And, Mr Taylor, one of those brothers, one of the businessmen, was Abbas Fawaz. Isn't that correct?

  • And Abbas Fawaz was involved with logging concessions in Liberia. Isn't that correct?

  • One of the logging concessions he was involved with was in an area that was referred to as MWPI. Isn't that correct?

  • That could be correct, yeah.

  • Do you recall what area of the country Abbas Fawaz's logging concessions were located in?

  • If I'm not mistaken it was located in the southeast of Liberia, Maryland. In the general Maryland area, the southeast.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, it is correct, is it not, that you used Abbas Fawaz to organise shipments of ammunition to the Ivory Coast?

  • No. Abbas Fawaz was never involved in any arms shipment to la Cote d'Ivoire or even involved in any military activities in Liberia. No. Never.

  • And, indeed, he organised these shipments of ammunition through Harper. Isn't that correct?

  • Mr Taylor, it is true, is it not, that forces in Ivory Coast acknowledged that they received support from you during the conflict in Ivory Coast?

  • I have no knowledge of that, no. I have no knowledge. You say is it true, I have no knowledge of that. I did not supply any and I have no knowledge of forces saying that.

  • If we could look at tab 29 in annex 3, please. This is a UN panel of experts' report S/2003/937. Tab number 29 in annex 3. And if we look at the first page, we see "United Nations Security Council S/2003/937, 28 October 2003", letter dated "28 October 2003 from the chairman of the Security Council committee established pursuant to resolution 1343 (2001) concerning Liberia addressed to the President of the Security Council." And the chairman indicates that he is submitting the report of the panel of experts.

    And then if we could look at paragraph 42 at page 16 of this report. And we see, beginning a few words into the sentence, it talks about a matter being of particular concern. "Political leaders of the forces nouvelle acknowledged to the panel that they had asked for and received support from Charles Taylor."

    Mr Taylor, it is correct, is it not, that you were providing support to forces nouvelle in the Cote d'Ivoire?

  • That is totally incorrect, no. This is a group - is that FANCI, or Forces Nouvelle? I - never. Never.

  • Madam President, I would ask that that document be marked for identification.

  • The Security Council letter reference S/2003/937 of 28 October 2003 is MFI-365.

  • Mr Taylor, in the Ivory Coast, while you were publicly presenting yourself as working for peace, you were in fact involved in escalating and continuing the conflict in Ivory Coast. Isn't that correct?

  • And, in fact, Mr Taylor, that is similar to your approach regarding Sierra Leone, isn't it?

  • Where you were publicly pronouncing yourself to be advocating for peace but in reality were supporting the rebels in their continuing activities in Sierra Leone. Isn't that correct?

  • And, Mr Taylor, your testimony to these judges about your ongoing peace efforts in Ivory Coast was simply not true, was it?

  • It was true. If it was not true they would not have kept inviting me. It was fully true.

  • Who invited you, sir?

  • Both the Ivorian government - the entire committee responsible for the - the French government invited me. The Togolese government invited me along with President Gbagbo and all of them. All of the principal peace conferences on Cote d'Ivoire in France and Lome I attended up until 2002. I think there are photographs that have been displayed here to that also.

  • It's just that the answer, the way you gave it, looked like the judges had invited you.

  • Oh, no. No, I'm sorry. Not the judges.

  • Mr Taylor, do you recall on direct examination testifying about helicopters coming from Sierra Leone on about 14 February at the time of the intervention in Sierra Leone?

  • And you testified that those helicopters were with junta personnel?

  • And that they came into Spriggs Payne Airport?

  • Now, you also testified about handing these junta personnel over to the Sierra Leone government at some point after that; do you remember that, Mr Taylor?

  • Well, not in that way. I did not say I handed them. I consented sometime afterward to their being turned over. I didn't say I personally handed them because ECOMOG seized them from our people.

  • Now, indeed, Mr Taylor, if we would look at 29 September 2009 at page 29754. Mr Taylor, we see a question beginning at line 13 asking you if you saw Sam Bockarie in October 1998 and you said, yes, you saw him in October. And then when you were asked when, you said you weren't sure, it could have been somewhere in the middle of October or thereabouts. His second trip to Monrovia. And then the question:

    "Q. Now, were you aware that 24 soldiers had been tried

    and executed by a military tribunal in Sierra Leone?"

    And you, yes, you were aware and very upset because you felt that Kabbah had lied to you. And then there is a question at line 27:

    "Q. Because you had sent King back to Sierra Leone, hadn't

    you?

    A. That is correct. So that was about my only involvement

    in knowing what happened down there."

    You go on to indicate you were very concerned about that and then if we look at line 8 on the next page, 29755:

    "So when this issue arose with the February, to be exact February 14, arrival of Victor King and all of the squabbles that happened thereafter, my decision to send him there was a very hard decision and I wanted to - all of the assurances that nothing would happen to him."

    Now, Mr Taylor, when Victor King and these other junta members came into Spriggs Payne, they were taken into custody by ECOMOG. Isn't that correct?

  • After - yes. Yes. But after a problem with our security, yes, they were taken by force by ECOMOG, yes.

  • And ECOMOG retained custody over those individuals while they remained in Liberia. Isn't that correct?

  • That is correct.

  • And eventually indeed those individuals were taken to Nigeria. Isn't that correct?

  • Mr Taylor, isn't that correct?

  • No. To my - you see, this is what I mean. I was told at that particular time that they would remain in Liberia, okay. That they would be kept at ECOMOG base because I insisted that Liberia had jurisdiction. Now, if they were taken to Nigeria it was not with my knowledge or my consent and it was a betrayal because I insisted that they were on Liberian territory, ECOMOG said they had kept them at their base and I got the assurance of the President of Nigeria that they would remain in Liberia. So to the best of my knowledge they are in Liberia.

  • And indeed, Mr Taylor, they were taken to Nigeria and it was from Nigeria that they were returned back to Sierra Leone. Isn't that correct?

  • Well, from documents I have read from your bundle, documents that I have read, it is true but I considered that - in fact, I got annoyed because my understanding was that those people were still being held at ECOMOG base in Monrovia. I never knew that they were taken to Nigeria.

  • In fact, Mr Taylor, it was Nigeria who eventually sent them back to Sierra Leone. Isn't that correct?

  • That is correct. And they lied to me and betrayed me.

  • Mr Taylor, it wasn't you who sent them back to Sierra Leone, was it?

  • Well, my consent - I consented after a protracted - listen. For the judges, the period involving the King situation was not a day or two. It lasted for I would say a minimum - a minimum of about two months. I had been assured that those people would be kept in Liberia. And the agreement that was made between the President and myself was that it would only be with my consent that ECOMOG would release those people, and that was what I thought.

  • When you say the President and yourself, which President is this?

  • We're talking about - this is February '99 - we're talking about Abacha, okay. And I was so angry about this. Remember we talked about planes flying over and I was so annoyed and I said I want those people back. Abacha said, "Look, we'll keep them in custody because you may not have the place to hold these people, but they will not be sent unless you agree." And I swear all along I thought those people were in Liberia, not knowing they had slipped them out. And I got to know this only from the documents that I read that were given to me by the Prosecution.

  • Indeed, Mr Taylor, that's the document that you read that was actually a statement that was taken from Victor King. Isn't that right?

  • Yes, that's what I read and I got upset since I read it.

  • So, Mr Taylor, you are telling this Court that President Abacha wasn't straightforward with you?

  • But that's not really true, is it, Mr Taylor?

  • That is very, very true. I thought those people were still in Liberia and I consented based on the fact that they were leaving from Liberia to Freetown.

  • But indeed, Mr Taylor, it wasn't you who sent them, was it? They were sent from Nigeria?

  • With my consent, yes. After I got the assurance and Abacha assured me and that Kabbah had said he would not do anything to them, I said, well, fine, they can be taken.

  • And in fact it wasn't you, contrary to your evidence on 29 September - it wasn't you who sent King back to Sierra Leone, was it?

  • Well, I would say my own interpretation of my consent is they were a jurisdiction of Liberia, I would say I sent.

  • Mr Taylor, are you saying you consented to their being taken to Sierra Leone, or to their being taken to Nigeria?

  • You gave your consent for them to be taken to Sierra Leone?

  • And you gave this consent to who?

  • Mr Taylor, when did you give him that consent?

  • Well, this whole problem lasted, like I said, for about a minimum of two months. So we had been on this up and down about will they go, will they not go? And I insisted that it be turned over to Liberia's jurisdiction. Nigeria refused, there were a lot of hostilities. Some somewhere after about two months I said, well, fine, I need the assurance that nothing will happen to them because of a previous experience that Liberia had had with General Lansana. Abacha finally told me after some two months that Kabbah had said and had ordered the assurance that they would not be killed. So I said, if this is the case, their transfer back to Sierra Leone is fine with me and I thought they took off from ECOMOG base in Monrovia, not knowing they were already out.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, let's talk a bit about helicopters. During direct examination you testified about the capacity of an Mi-2 helicopter. Do you recall that?

  • And you referred to such helicopter as a very tiny aircraft that takes about six persons. Do you recall saying that on 19 August?

  • And you indicated throughout your testimony that this Mi-2 was a small helicopter, correct?

  • An Mi-2 is - yes, it's a small helicopter, yes.

  • And you testified that you had an Mi-2 helicopter after 1999. Do you remember testifying to that on 28 October?

  • I'm not sure if I said "after". I said we had an Mi helicopter as of 1999, yes.

  • Indeed I don't think you did say "after", Mr Taylor. If we look at 28 October, 30596.

  • No, you said "after", counsel. I didn't say that.

  • I'm agreeing that I don't think you did say "after".

  • If we look at 28 October 2009 at page 30596, at the bottom of that page you indicate, "Because the first helicopter we even get in Liberia in 1999 is an Mi-2." Do you remember telling the Court that, Mr Taylor?

  • So this was in 1999 that you say you got this Mi-2?

  • Actually, Mr Taylor, by the end of 1999 you had two Mi-2 helicopters, didn't you?

  • Oh, yeah, by the end of 1999, yeah.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, the estimate of the passenger capability of an Mi-2 that you gave is inaccurate, isn't it?

  • It probably is. I'm not an engineer. I told this Court frankly from my heart that it's a small helicopter, it would take about six people. Now technically that could be - I mean, anybody can draw a technical point from that. I tried to give factual evidence of my knowledge of the size of this aircraft.

  • Mr Taylor, an Mi-2 could carry nine persons including the crew, isn't that right?

  • If you have the technical information. It's a very small helicopter and I know I said six. If you add the two pilots, eight, so maybe it could be closer to nine. So I wouldn't fight with the technical information. I know I said six, plus the two pilots maybe that's eight, so, I don't know, nine, I don't care.

  • And an Mi-2 actually would have the capability to carry 700 kilograms of cargo, wouldn't it?

  • Well, without the individuals or with the individuals?

  • That could be cargo only, Mr Taylor.

  • Okay, well, you have to give me a minute, counsel. Let me do the calculation, because 700 --

  • [Overlapping speakers] 2.2.

  • Yeah, because 700 kilos that's about 1.5 tons I would say or thereabouts and an average human being, being about 150 pounds times nine times - so I would say - I would say - no, let me say 1.5 ton. No, a ton is 2,000.

  • 2,000, yes.

  • No, I'm wrong about that. Not 1.5 tons.

  • It would be less than that.

  • 1,500 pounds, that's under a ton. 1,500 pounds and about nine human beings sound alike, yeah. That would be - that sounds - just from the top of my head that sounds pretty straight.

  • So if we could look at tab 32 in annex 1, please. We see the front page shows that this is Asia Trading Post online, Russian helicopters sales. Then if we can look at the next page, please, and we see Mi-2 Russian helicopter sales. Then if we look at the description below the picture where it talks about various properties of the helicopter and we look at the third line down, "The standard passenger version of Mi-2 helicopter has seating for one pilot and eight passengers." So the standard passenger version would be for nine persons total. "The interior can be quickly converted for transport of 700 kilograms of cargo." Then if we look --

  • Excuse me, counsel, I'm not seeing that 700. Maybe we could expand the page or contract the page.

  • Can you please adjust that scoping properly.

  • Do you see the --

  • You see that now?

  • 700 kilograms. Then we go down, "The range of the helicopter with external tanks as standard is 580 kilometres." Then if we skip the next sentence - in fact the next two sentences and begin with, "Internal cargo carrier of loads up to 700 kilograms" and it shows 1,544 pounds, "Or as a flying crane with cargo sling for loads up to 800 kilograms."

  • So if we took your example and had persons on that helicopter of 150 pounds, even if we had seven persons on that helicopter, including crew, it would have the weight capacity to carry cargo as well, wouldn't it?

  • Well, the way you asked that question we're getting into technical things. I mean, the way how you put it, there are other technical information now that you show me this that would be very important for Court.

  • Mr Taylor, my question was weight capacity?

  • Yeah, but you have weight capacities, your Honours --

  • Mr Taylor, my question was that even if you had seven persons and you have given an average weight of 150 pounds, if we had seven persons on that helicopter, including the crew, it would have the weight capacity to carry cargo as well, wouldn't it?

  • Well, that's --

  • Just before you answer that, perhaps I'm reading the article incorrectly, but that's not what this article says, in my opinion. If you look at the third line, it says, "The standard passenger version of Mi-2 helicopter has seating for one Pilot and eight passengers. The interior can be quickly converted for transport of 700 kilos of cargo." Doesn't that mean in lieu of the - if you convert it, wouldn't that be in lieu of carrying the passengers, not together with the passengers?

  • I wouldn't read it that way, Mr Justice, because they are talking about the maximum --

  • What would you need to convert if it meant both?

  • They are talking about the maximum capacity should you be carrying cargo only. There's nothing here to indicate that you are unable to mix and they are talking about maximum weights of carrier loads of up to 700 kilograms.

  • Yes, but, Ms Hollis, if the people - the seven or eight people are seated, even if their weight is below the maximum, where would you put your cargo? Because the people are there seated.

  • You put it in the middle of the aisle with carrier seats - with troop seats.

  • Well, I disagree with your reading. To me, that's quite clear, that if you have to convert the interior to carry cargo, that means that it no longer carries the passengers.

  • I'm afraid I am of the same view.

  • Well, I think there is a common experience of what are called troop seats which are along the sides of the helicopters with cargo in the middle.

  • Ms Hollis, I think in view of the various interpretations around the courtroom, perhaps you could rephrase your question, because you are stating it as a fact and we are disagreed about the interpretation that's here. We, at least half of the Bench, don't think that you are putting the correct interpretation on the information that we have in front of us.

  • But, your Honours, I could simply say, as I've said before, I think there is a common experience in this courtroom of helicopters carrying individuals in what may be called troop seats along the side with cargo down the middle.

  • You are talking about Mi-8s. This is an Mi-2. I've never been on - how many people here have been on an Mi-2?

  • There is nothing here to indicate, your Honour, that such a capability as troop seats is not possible on this aircraft.

  • Well, there's nothing to indicate it is either. What I can see here is that you have to convert it if you want to carry cargo, otherwise you can carry eight people and the pilot, or if you convert it, you can carry cargo and that would be in lieu of the eight people and the pilot. So that's my interpretation, but as the Presiding Judge says, Ms Hollis, if you have a different idea, then certainly you cannot put questions to this witness as though they were proven facts.

  • I would again, at the risk of incurring your Honours' displeasure, state for the record that we may put to this witness --

  • No, you can't because I just said you can't. This is not a proven fact that it carries both cargo and passengers. So you rephrase your questions appropriately if you want to question the witness on this passage.

  • We would simply note for the record that we --

  • I don't want to hear you noting for the record. The Court has made a decision, Ms Hollis, and you've got a habit of questioning the Court's decisions after they have made them. There is a way to do that, but it's not by continuing to place arguments in favour of your cause when the Court has ruled against you.

  • And I was not going to argue, your Honour.

  • Ms Hollis, please continue but do not put the same question to the witness. You can continue with other questions.

  • In light of your Honours' comments and interpretation of this material, the Prosecution would have no additional questions. We would, however, ask that this be marked for identification.

  • I'm trying to describe this correctly. I think it's a Google search excerpt describing a Russian helicopter, Mi-2.

  • That would be correct, Madam President.

  • That would be - it's marked MFI-366.

  • We would ask that that would include both pages, the cover page and the page referred to with the photograph.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, in relation to helicopters, by July and August 2000, you had delivery of Mi-2 and Mi-17 helicopters. Isn't that correct?

  • And these were delivered to Monrovia in transactions set up through Victor Bout. Isn't that true?

  • That is not true. And, counsel, you asked two questions about an Mi-2 and an Mi-17. Now, we do have a second Mi-2, for the Court record, but I'm answering I never ever received an Mi-17 in Liberia.

  • Mr Taylor, I believe you had indicated you had both of those Mi-2s in 1999. Is that correct?

  • If we could - may I have a moment, Madam President? If we could look at exhibit P-18. If you could bring that down so that we can see the top of that page, please. We see United Nations Security Council, 20 December 2000, note by the President of the Security Council, and we see it refers to the attached report of the panel of experts and that the report is being circulated for the information of the members of the United Nations.

    And then if we could please turn to page 39 of that exhibit and at the top you will see in large letters "4409". And if we could look at paragraph 233, and there is a reference to an aircraft that is described in paragraph 232, and then it says:

    "This plane was used in July and August 2000 for arms deliveries from Europe to Liberia. This aircraft, and an Antonov, made four deliveries to Liberia, three times in July and once in August 2000. The cargo included attack-capable helicopters, spare rotors, anti-tank and anti-aircraft systems, missiles, armoured vehicles, machine-guns and almost a million round of ammunition. The helicopters were Mi-2 and Mi-17 types."

    And if we look at paragraph 234:

    "The transactions were set up by Victor Bout in the United Arab Emirates and by Guus van Kouwenhoven mentioned in paragraph 217 above."

    So, Mr Taylor, it is correct, is it not, that in July and August 2000 you received shipments which included Mi-2 and Mi-17 type helicopters?

  • You know it's regrettable but this panel of experts, I swear on my life, they lied. Those two Mi-8s that I Charles Ghankay Taylor left in Liberia are still in the hanger at Spriggs Payne Airport. I never - that's why I've always said that these reports - this report is totally wrong. I never had an Mi-17 in the Republic of Liberia. I never had any armoured carrier. I left Liberia on a plane. And what was accounted for there, there was never, never an MI-17 or armoured in all this nonsense. This panel of experts sadly lied.

  • Mr Taylor, this panel of experts that were part of this --

  • Excuse me, Ms Hollis. Mr Taylor, did you say that two Mi-8s that you left in Liberia?

  • We had Mi-8s. It's a part of my testimony before the Court, that there were Mi-8s, that we had Mi-2s. We had two Mi-2s. And there's also my testimony before this Court that we also had Mi-8s by 2000.

  • And they are the two Mi-8s that are still in the hanger in Liberia. Never an Mi-17. There was never an armoured carrier. I don't know where these people got the report. I swear, they lied. It's not true.

  • Mr Taylor, the persons who are responsible for this panel of experts report, are they part of this conspiracy against you?

  • Well, not necessarily, but they are wrong, wrong, wrong here. Very wrong. We contested this and those aircrafts are - I didn't fly out of Liberia in a helicopter. Those aircrafts are still in Liberia and they are Mi-8s, and they misled the Security Council with this report. It's wrong.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, you have testified that an Mi-17 is a huge helicopter, haven't you, on 26 August?

  • An Mi-17 is a - the ECOMOG had an Mi-17 in Liberia. It's a very big helicopter from - when that helicopter is moving, it's huge. I haven't been around it, but I know that ECOMOG had one in Liberia, but the Liberian government had Mi-8.

  • And an Mi-17 can take up to 30 passengers. Isn't that correct?

  • And hold some 4,000 kilograms of cargo?

  • I have no idea of the capacity of an Mi-17. None.

  • And if we could look at tab 34 in annex 1, please. And if you could bring that down a bit, please, so we can see the top of the page. And we see SinoDefence.com and then we see Mi-17/171 Hip Multirole Helicopter and a picture of the helicopter. And then if we could please turn to the next page, and we see in the paragraph above the caption "armament":

    "The cockpit accommodates a crew of three. The cockpit and the main cabin are heated with air condition as optional. The main cabin can carry up to 24 equipped soldiers or 30 passengers or 20 stretcher patients. The seats can be removed to carry 4,000 kilograms of cargo. Alternately, the helicopter can carry 3,000 large size cargo externally under sling."

    So this sets out the capabilities of the helicopter in terms of passengers, crew or cargo, correct, Mr Taylor?

  • As stated here for this aircraft. As stated, what you just read, that's what it states.

  • We would ask that that be marked for identification, Madam President.

  • Ms Hollis, before we mark it I'm just wondering. This article, it talks of the Mi-17 and the Mi-171. Is this a picture of either/or? What is this a picture of?

  • This, as I understand it, Madam President, is an alternate designation of this helicopter.

  • Yes, but you didn't answer my question, Ms Hollis.

  • So this would be the Mi-17 which also is referred as the Mi-171.

  • Because I was referring to the paragraph under the heading "Power plant" where the two are definitely distinguished, but I will mark this article as requested. This is the article from the web page SinoDefence.com showing the description and picture of the Mi-17/171 Hip Multirole Helicopter. It's marked MFI-367.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • Mr Taylor, by October 2001 you had two Mi-17s in operation. Isn't that correct?

  • I never, ever had an Mi-17 in the Republic of Liberia.

  • And you had another Mi-17 grounded with technical problems, correct?

  • Never had an Mi-17 in Liberia.

  • If we could please look at P-32, which is S/2001/1015, United Nations Security Council, 26 October 2001, letter dated 26 October 2001 from the chairman of the Security Council committee established pursuant to resolution 1343. Again we see that the chairman is sending the report of the panel of experts as the annex to this. Then if we could please look at paragraph 225, and that would be on the page that has the large numbers at the top 4483. 00004483 is the large number at the top. The number at the bottom would be 50 and it is paragraph 225. If we look at this paragraph five lines down, please:

    "During its visits to Liberia in July and October 2001, this panel observed two Mi-17s, one with the markings of the Anti-Terrorist Unit, based at the airport of Spriggs Payne, close to the city of Monrovia. Another one is grounded with technical problems in a hangar at Roberts International Airport since early 2001."

    It goes on to say:

    "Two Mi-2 helicopters were also supplied by Sanjivan Ruprah in October 1999 and spare parts for the Mi-17 and for Mi-24 helicopters were obtained from Kyrgyzstan in July 2000. The panel also spoke to Sanjivan Ruprah who, as a partner of Victor Bout, based in Liberia had been key to the procurement of the deliveries of Mi-8 helicopters."

    So, Mr Taylor, as of 2001 you actually had two operational Mi-17 helicopters, did you not?

  • Never. Those helicopters are still parked right where the panel say and I guess now we have to go and take some pictures, they are still there. They are Mi-8 helicopters. They misled the council. Those helicopters are still right there where they said they were. Today they are there.

  • Just let me be clear if you don't mind, Ms Hollis. Mr Taylor, you are saying that there are two Mi-8s still there, they are not Mi-17s?

  • Because we have never had Mi-17s, your Honour, ever. And they mislead the council. They are Mi-8s and the two helicopters - there are two helicopters, they are still parked at those positions as we sit in this courtroom and they mislead the council.

  • Thank you for that clarification.

  • Mr Taylor, the authors of this report, are they part of this conspiracy against you?

  • Well, they misled the council and so I would say that it is conspiratorial. Whether there is a design planned, I can't say that. But the fact that they could deliberately go and see Mi-8s and call them 17, it shocks me when those helicopters are still on the ground. So I don't know. So it's conspiratorial, yes. I'm not saying they were part of the overall grand scheme, but yes to your question.

  • So in fact, Mr Taylor, by 2001 you had a number of helicopters that were in your service in Liberia. Isn't that correct?

  • Well, let's be specific now. Let's be specific. When you say a number, would you please help me in your count; what you mean by a number of helicopters.

  • You had two helicopters that you had obtained in 1999 that were designated as the Mi-8 helicopters?

  • But indeed, Mr Taylor, in 1999 you also had received those helicopters with the assistance of Sanjivan Ruprah. Isn't that correct?

  • No, no. Which helicopters? You've asked me several questions now.

  • The two helicopters you acquired in 1999, Mr Taylor?

  • You mean the two Mi-2s? Is that your question?

  • That's correct, Mr Taylor.

  • Two Mi-2 helicopters you had in 1999?

  • You had those by October 1999, correct?

  • I can't be specific and I have tried to stay away because I don't remember, because the procurement and how they got in, I know it was in 1999. I can't say it was October. I cannot say it was whatever month you call. But I did have two Mi-2s in 1999.

  • And Sanjivan Ruprah was involved in the procurement and supply of those helicopters to you in 1999, isn't that correct?

  • I can't be certain. I don't know. I had somebody purchase - if he dealt with van Ruprah I don't know, but I had the two helicopters and they were bought on my instructions.

  • And in fact you knew Sanjivan Ruprah, did you not?

  • I knew of him, but I don't know him personally.

  • And he was associated with Benoni Urey, wasn't he?

  • Well, I'm not sure if "associated". I knew that some of - he knew Mr Urey, from the best of my knowledge, yes.

  • So, Mr Taylor, by October 1999, two Mi-2 helicopters and, by 2001, two Mi-17 helicopters that were operational. That's correct, is it not, Mr Taylor?

  • You've asked me two questions. On the first question, on the two Mi-2s, yes. On the second question, we never had ever an Mi-17 in the republic. So to your second question, no.

  • And you were using those helicopters to carry out various operations in Liberia. Isn't that correct, Mr Taylor?

  • Both the Mi-2s and the Mi-17s?

  • Well, you've asked me two questions. On the first question on the Mi-2s, we used them, the small helicopters, for various activities in Liberia, yes. We never had an Mi-17 so it could not have been used.

  • Mr Taylor, when did you first know of Sanjivan Ruprah?

  • I can't recollect the exact time that I knew of him. I said I don't know. If you brought him before me as big as this Court I don't know. I knew of him. And that had to be somewhere I would say - I would put it maybe back to '98, early '99 that I knew of him.

  • And how was it that you knew of him?

  • I think Mr Ruprah was serving in some capacity with the maritime - I can't say if it's a programme, but he had something to do with some work with the maritime, if I'm not mistaken. Something like a public relations ambassadorial role or something like that, yes.

  • And from whom did you get this information?

  • Oh, that would be from - if he was used in an ambassadorial role for maritime, the commissioner would inform me, Mr Urey.

  • So the maritime commission had people that acted in ambassadorial roles?

  • When we talk about ambassador here we're talking about any special activities being done by individuals that are non-Liberians. From time to time they could be given courtesy passports, courtesy diplomatic passports. Not with the same type of immunity as a stationed diplomat, but they could be given like a courtesy passport for a period of time to carry out certain functions in the interests of the government.

  • And to your knowledge did Sanjivan Ruprah have such a passport?

  • I guess he could have had one. In his role, I wouldn't know the specifics, but I would think that he would have one because he was doing - from what I understood, he was doing some special work, I don't know what, for the maritime, but he would have one.

  • And who told you about this special work he was doing for the maritime?

  • I just said the commissioner would tell me.

  • And at that time that would be Benoni Urey?

  • Would he tell you what type of special work Sanjivan Ruprah was doing?

  • He might, but in this particular case he did not - what he would do is to inform me that - because to issue diplomatic passports you need some tacit approval from the Foreign Ministry and the President. And so he would inform that certain individuals were needed and I would say, well, it is okay to issue the passport. I wouldn't go into the details.

  • So, Mr Taylor, is that what you mean when you say tacit approval; that you would say it's okay to issue the passport?

  • Mr Taylor, do you recall on 4 November 2009 testifying that you had a part in setting up an ECOWAS court?

  • Yes. There is an ECOWAS court and ECOWAS set up that court and I said I had a part. We met and finally I can remember setting up that court in Dakar. Yes, there is an ECOWAS court.

  • And when were you part of that effort to set up that court?

  • I would put that to - that process started during the administration of Alpha Konare, so that would put that to about, I would say, 2002 or thereabouts.

  • Now, is that when you were part of the effort to set it up or are you talking about when the court actually came into being?

  • When I say set it up, I'm not a lawyer. As a member of the authority of ECOWAS, we approved in consensus the setting up of an ECOWAS court, that's what I mean I was part of the process. I was still President and a member of the authority.

  • Do you remember when that court came into being?

  • Well, like I say, we completed, if I'm not mistaken, it may slip me, I'm sure it was during the administration of Alpha Konare, and so that's about 2002. Like I say, it could be a little earlier. But I can still remember, we did the final work on that court, and even dealing with which countries would even provide judges, in Dakar, Senegal. I'll put that to 2002 or it could be early 2003, but I would not put it - I'll put it in the general area of 2002.

  • And during what time period were you involved in the efforts that actually culminated in setting this court up?

  • All Presidents of ECOWAS were involved in the consensus of setting up that court during my presidency. Every President. I'm not --

  • Mr Taylor, the question was: During what time period were you involved in this effort?

  • Throughout my presidency when that issue came before ECOWAS.

  • Do you remember what year that was?

  • You've asked me that. I've tried to tell you that around - I can remember about 2002 or thereabouts. We concluded all of the protocols for the setting up of that court and completed the process, I can remember this clearly, in Dakar, Senegal.

  • And, Mr Taylor, when did you first begin the process, you yourself, your involvement in the process that led to the creation of this court?

  • From the time that issue came before ECOWAS, all of us, including myself, were involved because ECOWAS operates on a consensus in the approval of the court.

  • And do you remember when that was that the issue first came before ECOWAS?

  • No, I don't remember exactly. I have said, in truthfulness to these judges, I can remember it was during the administration of Alpha Konare. I remember that very well. And Alpha Konare led ECOWAS for two years straight, two consecutive years, so I would put that - Alpha would be 2002, maybe a part of 2001, because after Alpha Konare, I think it was Eyadema that took over. I don't remember the exact years, but I remember that it was during the administration of Alpha Konare, because he was very, very interested in this and I was too.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, throughout your direct examination on several occasions in response to Defence counsel's questions, you indicated that in the past you had not foreseen the possibility of facing criminal charges at a later date. Do you recall telling the judges that?

  • And if we look at 6 September 2009 at page 26167 - actually, that would be 6 August 2009 at 26167. And we see at the bottom of the page, line 27:

    "Q. In December 1998, did you foresee that you would be

    facing trials years later on these allegations?

    A. Not in my wildest dreams, no."

    And then if we also look at 6 August at 26173 and we look at line 25 and again you were being asked:

    "Q. When you were writing to President Clinton at the back

    end of December 1998, did you know that you would be facing

    trial a few years later?

    A. Not in my wildest dreams, no, no, no."

    And then if we could look at 10 August 2009 at page 26275, and if we could look at first line 7:

    "Q. Now, we need to pause and appreciate the date on which

    this statement was read."

    Your counsel at this time is reading a statement into the record and he indicates, "This was 26 January 1999.

    A. That is correct.

    Q. In light of some of the content of what comes after,

    Mr Taylor, can I ask you this: When you authorised this

    statement to be announced in London, did you anticipate

    that you would be on trial before this document was taken

    seriously?

    A. No, no, no, that was the last thing on my mind, trial

    or being indicted and all of that."

    Then at the bottom, line 27:

    "Q. But did you anticipate at this time that you would

    have to be explaining yourself about your activities during

    this period in a Court of law?"

    A. No, not at all. Never occurred to me."

    Then we have other similar statements by you, including also on 10 August at page 26412, and if we look at line 16:

    "Q. Secondly, at the time you were informing your brother

    President of this, Mr Taylor, back in 1998 no less, were

    you aware that a decade later you would be on trial on

    these allegations?

    A. No.

    Q. So you were, in effect, setting up a prior Defence?

    A. No, I had no idea in my wildest dream that I would be

    sitting here."

    And then on 31 August your attention is drawn to March 2002. This is 31 August 2009 at page 28052. And if we look at line 25:

    "Q. Pause. By this date, Mr Taylor, March 2002, what was

    your knowledge of this tribunal being set up in Sierra

    Leone?"

    And you say you were not on top of the details regarding this, especially when you knew the tribunal was a Sierra Leone tribunal.

    And then if we switch over to 28053, at lines 5 through 8, you are asked again if you contemplated that in due course you may become a defendant before that tribunal, and you said, "Never. Never." And you go on to explain from 11 to 16 that your lawyers, as far as you were concerned - "or we were concerned and our lawyers that knew the tribunal was a Sierra Leone tribunal, not a Chapter 7 tribunal and contemplating coming before it was the last thing on my mind."

    And then also on 31 August, you are again asked about this at page 28062 and 28063 wherein you were talking about an interview in July/August 2002, and this is with the journalist Bafour Ankomah. And we see this in line 21, "In July/August of this year, 2002, I do another very extensive interview with him." And then the question at the bottom of the page:

    "Q. Six months or so before an indictment is signed

    against you?

    A. Yes."

    And you indicate - you are asked:

    "Q. At the time of this interview, did you contemplate in

    due course you would be put on trial for war crimes and

    crimes against humanity?

    A. No, I did not at all."

    And then you were asked:

    "Q. Were you seeking in that interview to effectively set

    up a defence to a criminal charge?

    A. No. No."

    And then on 14 September, perhaps you remember, your counsel asked you:

    "Q. You must have had a crystal ball, Mr Taylor, which

    told you that 'In anticipation of such an indictment I

    ought to kill Sam Bockarie.' Is that the case?

    A. No, not the case."

    Do you remember the Defence counsel on 14 September putting that question to you about "you must have had a crystal ball"? Remember that, Mr Taylor?

  • Yes, I do.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, in fact, you were aware from as early as 1993 that you could be charged with war crimes for your conduct. Isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • Now, let me understand your question. You say - you're asking me if I - I want to hear your question so I can --

  • You were aware from as early as 1993 that you could be charged with war crimes for your conduct. Isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • That I could be tried for war crimes for my conduct?

  • Well, I would say, the way they put it that I could be, I was not aware in that way. To the extend that there are certain crimes that are punishable, that I would say that one would be aware that he could be punished for certain crimes. But the way you put the question, I'm not - I'm not sure that I could be. Well, nobody came to me and told me, say, "Guess what?" You know. I don't have any recollection of that kind of awareness.

  • Mr Taylor, in June 1993 the interim Government of Liberia issued a writ for your arrest for war crimes. Isn't that right?

  • I'm not worried about - I'm not aware of the interim government. There were two governments in Liberia, so an interim government - by this time you are talking about the competing governments of Sawyer and myself. It was silly for Sawyer to even think about being in Monrovia and say he issued - I never even knew of it.

  • Mr Taylor, there was one officially recognised government as the Government of Liberia and that was the interim government in 1993. Isn't that correct?

  • Mr Taylor, you were aware of this writ that was issued for your arrest, weren't you?

  • I'm telling this Court, I was not aware that Amos Sawyer issued any writ of arrest for me as the National Patriotic Reconstruction Assembly Government that had the country was not told about any such thing, and I think it would have been foolish for Sawyer to think about issuing - there were two governments in Liberia recognised.

  • Mr Taylor, as early as 1993 you were also aware of the creation of an international tribunal for crimes in the former Yugoslavia, were you not, Mr Taylor?

  • By - you said 1993?

  • Madam President, I interrupt at this stage because in our submission this line of cross-examination, prefaced as it was by various references to testimony given by Mr Taylor in answer to questions by me in chief, is totally misleading. The question was based on the premise: Were you aware that you would be indicted by the Special Court for Sierra Leone? Now, to be questioning the witness did he know that there was a writ issued by the Liberian government in 1993, or was he aware of the creation of an International Tribunal For the Former Yugoslavia totally warps the logic of the questions asked in chief. We're talking about two completely different things.

    If my learned friend is asking Mr Taylor: Mr Taylor, are you a student of international criminal law, and, as a consequence, were you aware of the creation of the ICTY and the indictment of Mr Milosevic, that is a completely different situation altogether. So in our submission, it cannot be right for my learned friend to be approaching the topic in this way.

  • Ms Hollis, do you have anything in response?

  • Yes. We may rely on the plain language that is used by questions and answers in direct examination and, as we went over with this accused, that plain language was not limited to trial before this Court. And we went over the question and answer on 6 August 2009 at page 26167 where he was asked, "In December of 1998 did you foresee that you would be facing trial years later on these allegations?" He is not limiting it to a court. And the answer was, "Not in my wildest dreams."

  • Although the allegations were referred to, specific allegations were referred to. That was the context of that question.

  • It wasn't actually - I will leave your Honours to review the context for that. And if we look at 6 August at 26173 at the bottom of the page:

    "Q. Mr Taylor, let me ask the obvious question. When you

    were writing to President Clinton at the back end of

    December 1998 did you know you would be facing trial a few

    years later?

    A. Not in my wildest dream."

    No reference to the indictment in this case; no reference to this trial. So the Defence counsel phrased that question, used that language, and, in our submission, we can ask the questions that we are asking, premised on the direct examination, plain language questions and answers.

  • [Trial Chamber conferred]

  • Ms Hollis, we are of the view that if you are trying to elicit from Mr Taylor his knowledge of the fact that his actions as a Head of State could be challenged in a war crimes court as early as 1993, then that is permissible. But if you are simply asking about the knowledge of the ICTY, which is obviously outside of the indictment, then I think that would not be permissible.

    So what I would request - I'm not quite sure where you are going with the line of questioning, although I think I can suspect, is you try to quickly get back on track with the questions relating to Mr Taylor's conduct and whether he knew that that conduct could be challenged in a war crimes court. If you wouldn't, you know, go sort of off on a tangent, and try to relate quite quickly what the relevance is of your questions to the indictment and to the charges in the indictment.

  • The line of questioning was not directed to the indictment and the charges in the indictment per se. It was directed to the prior questions that in our view were much broader about his awareness of crimes, as well as his status as Head of State.

  • Yes, the - what we would permit as - what we think is permissible is that the Prosecution can inquire from the witness whether he knew way back in 1993, or whenever, that his conduct - or that any conduct going towards the commission of war crimes could be challenged potentially in a war crimes court. Not necessarily the Court for Sierra Leone. That is permissible to be asked.

  • Thank you. Then with that guidance I will go back:

  • Mr Taylor, it is correct, is it not, that as early as 1993 you were aware that your conduct could be the subject of criminal Prosecution in a court that dealt with war crimes. Isn't that right?

  • That is not correct as the proposition is put. That is not correct. When you say my conduct, again that would be a question, so I would say as the proposition is I would say no, because my conduct would be another matter that would be of a matter of discussion and debate whether in fact there was a conduct as alleged or that could be alleged in an indictment. So I would say no to your proposition.

  • Indeed, Mr Taylor, you were aware of this as far back as 1993 because you were aware that in fact there had been a warrant issued for your arrest for war crimes in Liberia. Isn't that correct?

  • I was not aware of any warrant issued for my arrest on war crimes because if you look - you are a lawyer. Technically a government in Monrovia - to charge for war crimes and be brought before a war crimes tribunal are also subject matters of the United Nations. So for Amos Sawyer it was a political move probably that he made, but I did not know of it and probably if I had known of it I would have known of what to do. But I'm not aware that Amos Sawyer was stupid enough from Monrovia to say he was issuing a warrant for my arrest when he knew there were two competing governments right in Liberia. So it was a political situation, so no.

  • And, Mr Taylor, you were also aware of the possibility that your conduct could lead you to face criminal charges on war crimes because you were aware of the creation of two international criminal tribunals to deal with people responsible for war crimes. Isn't that correct?

  • Well, if you put all the three questions together, I was not following the - I was not following - in 1993, if I go back to the base of your question, I was busy fighting. I was not following the creation of international tribunals. I was not.

  • Mr Taylor, as the leader of the NPFL in 1993 you were very sensitive to this development, were you not; this creation of these international tribunals?

  • To try people responsible for war crimes?

  • Mr Taylor, you were also aware that in 1993 you would face charges that could be based on crimes against humanity as well as war crimes, weren't you?

  • Now, you were aware of a meeting of the OAU from 1 to 5 July 1996 in Cameroon, weren't you, Mr Taylor?

  • 1996 in Cameroon? I can't recollect. There could have been one.

  • The 64th ordinary session of Council of Ministers of the OAU?

  • I would not have been involved in that process in 1996, so I was not following that.

  • Could we look at MFI-276, please. This is DCT-184. And if we could look at page 96, please.

  • What is this document?

  • Could you bring that down, please. You need to see the front or the cover page itself, Mr Taylor. This was a document that was used by your counsel during your direct examination.

  • Yes, I just see a page. I'm asking for - maybe if I saw the front page associated with this. I just see a page, so what's --

  • Could you please put the first page of this document MFI-276. It was marked during direct examination and used.

  • Okay. This is an official journal of ECOWAS. Okay.

  • Do you remember, Mr Taylor, in fact your counsel took you through many parts of this document during direct examination?

  • If we could look at page 96, please. And if we could look so we can see the very top of that page. We see, "64th Ordinary Session of the Council of Ministers of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) held in Cameroon, 1 to 5 July 1996." Then we see, "Resolution on Liberia CM/RES 1650 (LXIV)" and I believe that is 64, but I'm not sure of my Roman numerals on that. Mr Taylor, you were aware of the 64th ordinary session of the Council of Ministers or the OAU, were you not, Mr Taylor?

  • In 1996, no, I was not aware of it.

  • You were aware that in this resolution one of the things that they did was to warn the Liberian warring faction leaders that should the ECOWAS assessment of the Liberian peace process during its next summit meeting turn out to be negative, the OAU will help sponsor a draft resolution in the UN Security Council for the imposition of severe sanctions on them, including the possibility of setting up a war crime tribunal to try the leadership of the Liberian warring factions on the gross violation of human rights of Liberians.

    So, Mr Taylor, you were aware of that warning that was contained in that resolution, weren't you, Mr Taylor?

  • Ms Hollis, July 1996 Charles Taylor was not aware of this. I'm not the President of Liberia. This - I'm not aware of this resolution. I'm not saying that it didn't exist. I'm not aware of it. 1996, July? No.

  • And then if we could look in the same document at pages 116 to 117, the ECOWAS Committee of Nine on Liberia, 17 August 1996. If we could first look at page 116, please, at the very top of the page. We see this is:

    "Decision HSGC9-1/8 /96 relating to sanctions against persons who violate the ECOWAS peace plan for Liberia."

    And then if we look at page 117 at the bottom. If we could show the bottom of the page, please, 117. We see "Done at Abuja this 17th day of August 1996" and it is signed by Sani Abacha, "Chairman for Committee of Nine on Liberia". Mr Taylor, if we look at page 117 and we look at the second paragraph from the top of the page in the left-hand column:

    "Convinced that adoption of a package of appropriate sanctions which would be imposed on any party, faction or individual would greatly advance the peace process."

    Then we see "decides" further down, and under Article 1, if we can look at number 10:

    "For the purposes of ensuring strict compliance with the ECOWAS peace plan for Liberia, the following sanctions are hereby adopted:

    Invoke the OAU 1996 summit resolution which calls for the establishment of a war crimes tribunal to try all human rights offences against Liberians."

    So Mr Taylor, by 1996 you were aware that your conduct could be the subject of prosecution in a war crimes tribunal; isn't that correct?

  • Well, the way you put the question, you say by 1996 if I'm aware of my conduct that I could be tried. I'm not aware of this decision on the part of the OAU and really, quite frankly, I think if this had been a decision - as I'm reading the other part I see this more as threats, because by now nobody has been put on trial in Liberia. So no, I'm not aware.

  • Mr Taylor, it is not the OAU. It is the ECOWAS decision, the Committee of Nine on Liberia decision, that is invoking the OAU?

  • But that's - yes. We're saying the same thing.

  • [Overlapping speakers] And you were aware of this --

  • -- Committee of Nine decision, were you not, Mr Taylor?

  • I'm not aware. If you go back to that statement, what the OAU said - the OAU said that if certain things were not done --

  • I am talking about --

  • -- so ECOWAS is invoking what they said, but I'm not aware of this.

  • Ms Hollis, I think we'll have to return to this after the luncheon break. We're already way past our time. We'll adjourn to 2.30.

  • [Lunch break taken at 1.32 p.m.]

  • [Upon resuming at 2.30 p.m.]

  • Good afternoon. Ms Hollis, please continue.

  • Thank you, Madam President.

  • Madam President, can I announce a change in representation. We've been joined by Mr Munyard.

  • Thank you, Mr Griffiths. Welcome.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, in late January 1999 the Nigerian government indicated that it would do everything to bring men like you before the courts for the crimes committed in Sierra Leone, didn't it?

  • Mr Taylor, that would have been very important for you to know, would it not?

  • Well, your question - before the Court, did you say the Nigerian government said they would do everything to bring me before the Court? Did I understand that question?

  • Everything to bring - let me repeat it so that we know. In late January 1999 the Nigerian government indicated it would do everything to bring men like you before the courts for the crimes committed in Sierra Leone, didn't it?

  • No, I'm not aware of that statement by the Nigerian government.

  • Now, this sort of a statement in January 1999 would have been very important for you to know, wouldn't it?

  • It would be of interest. It would be of interest because of the hostilities between us at this period. It would be of interest to me.

  • And the Foreign Minister stating on a visit to Freetown in late January 1999 that - the Foreign Minister, that is, of Nigeria, stating that "We will do everything to bring men like Charles Taylor and his collaborators to justice," you would have been briefed about that statement, wouldn't you, Mr Taylor?

  • No. Quite frankly, I was not aware. I was not aware of that - that would have been a statement, had I been aware, that would have even filtered into my decision to even go to Nigeria. I was definitely not aware of that statement by them.

  • Then, Mr Taylor, in 2000 there were discussions about creating an international court for atrocities in Sierra Leone. Isn't that correct?

  • And you were aware of those discussions, weren't you, Mr Taylor?

  • Yes, I was aware through briefing reports that - at least news reports that that was under consideration, yes.

  • And, indeed, you were aware that July 2000 - by July 2000 the Sierra Leonean government was trying to put together legislation for this purpose. Isn't that right?

  • No, I was not following on that. I was not following up on that. There were just general reports that Sierra Leone was considering asking for the creation of a court, but what the legislature was doing at the time, I was not following that.

  • And as of July 2000 you were aware that the Sierra Leonean government was trying to obtain the acquiescence of the United Nations in granting assistance for the purpose of setting up this Court. Isn't that right?

  • Yes, I had some information that that was being done.

  • Just to be clear about what you've told the Court before, if we could look at 19 August 2009, 27258. If we could look at the question beginning at line 10:

    "Q. Now, as far as you're aware, by this time, which is

    July 2000, had any request been made for the setting up of

    a war crimes tribunal in Sierra Leone?

    A. Oh, yes. To the best of my knowledge, the Sierra

    Leonean government was, I think, putting together

    legislation, and I think they were trying to obtain the

    acquiescence of the United Nations in granting assistance

    for that purpose."

    So as of July you had that knowledge, yes, Mr Taylor?

  • I've already answered that.

  • And you had also heard reports that Foday Sankoh was being put on trial for crimes that were committed during the crisis, the war in Sierra Leone. Isn't that right?

  • And that these were war crimes that involved murder, rape, all of the activities that are so terrible that happened in Sierra Leone. Yes, Mr Taylor?

  • No, Ms Hollis, I was not aware. All I knew, that Foday Sankoh was being put on trial. I did not know the specific details of what charges would be involved in that trial. I was not aware of the details.

  • Let's look at that same page, 27258 beginning at line 21:

    "Q. But do you know what charges Foday Sankoh was facing

    while in custody at this time?

    A. I don't know the direct details, but I'm sure it was -

    all we heard on the reports that reached us was that he was

    being put on trial for crimes that were committed during

    the crisis - the war in Sierra Leone, and these were war

    crimes that involved murder, rape - all of the activities

    that are so terrible that happened in Sierra Leone, he was

    being charged with those."

    So that's what you told the Court on 19 August, yes, Mr Taylor?

  • That is correct. That's what I said.

  • Now, also in 2000 you became aware of a resolution of the Security Council that dealt with the creation of a Special Court for Sierra Leone. Isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • I don't know the details of the resolution, no.

  • Mr Taylor, this would have been Security Council resolution 1315, and that is exhibit P-337. If we could take a look at that, please. If that could be brought down just a bit so we can see the top of the page, please, and we "United Nations Security Council S/RES/1315 (2000)". The date is 14 August 2000, and then it says "Resolution 1315 (2000)". Then if we could go to the next page, please. If we could look at the third paragraph down:

    "Noting the report of the Secretary-General of 31 July 2000 (S/2000/751), and in particular taking note with appreciation of the steps already taken by the Secretary-General in response to the request of the Government of Sierra Leone to assist it in establishing a Special Court ..."

    Then if we could look farther down to where the numbered paragraphs begin and we see number 1:

    "... request the Secretary-General to negotiate an agreement with the Government of Sierra Leone to create an independent Special Court consistent with this resolution, and expresses its readiness to take further steps expeditiously upon receiving and reviewing the report of the Secretary-General referred to in paragraph 6 below;

    2. Recommends that the subject matter jurisdiction of the Special Court should include notably crimes against humanity, war crimes and other serious violations of international humanitarian law, as well as crimes under relevant Sierra Leonean law committed within the territory of Sierra Leone;

    3. Recommends further that the Special Court should have personal jurisdiction over persons who bear the greatest responsibility for the commission of the crimes referred to in paragraph 2, including those leaders who, in committing such crimes, have threatened the establishment of and implementation of the peace process in Sierra Leone."

    And, Mr Taylor, you indeed were aware of this Security Council resolution, isn't that correct?

  • I'm aware of a resolution that was passed by the Security Council assisting Sierra Leone. The details I never really read. I had lawyers do that.

  • And these lawyers that you had, they would have been very aware of this, would they not?

  • Now, Mr Taylor, you indicated that you and/or your legal team were at some point in contact with international lawyers on the Court in Sierra Leone. Do you remember telling the Court this on 4 November?

  • Mr Taylor, who were these lawyers on the Court in Sierra Leone that you had contact with?

  • Who were the lawyers on the Court in Sierra Leone?

  • I'm not sure if I said that they were in contact with lawyers on the Sierra Leonean Court. Is that what I said?

  • Let's take a look at that to make sure we have it right. This is 4 November, 31137. Here you're being asked about - you said:

    "I was not aware. Maybe it was out. I was not aware that any indictment had been unsealed for Sam Bockarie."

    Then you were asked:

    "Q. Had you heard any rumour that it was being suggested

    that he face criminal charges?

    A. What had been rumoured was a court was being set up in

    Sierra Leone and that several of their leaders could be

    indicated. It was rife out there."

    Then you were asked:

    "If you had knowledge that there was an indictment

    outstanding against Bockarie, would have you handed him

    over to the Special Court for Sierra Leone?

    Q. Not necessarily."

    In explaining your answer, if we go to line 18. You say:

    "The process, my legal people in Liberia and even international lawyers that we had contacted on this Court in Sierra Leone".

    Does that mean you had contacted them about the Court, Mr Taylor?

  • That is correct.

  • Not that they were on the Court itself?

  • Mr Taylor, it is not long after that that the Government of Liberia announces - and by that I mean these discussions about setting up a court and the Security Council resolution of August 2000 - it is not long after that that the Government of Liberia announced a new policy of disengagement. Isn't that correct, Mr Taylor - disengagement with the RUF?

  • Well, I'm not sure I understand the question because, you know, the way how you put the question, maybe you could repeat it in a way that I will understand it. Because I see it from a different perspective, and so maybe you could re-ask the question for me, please.

  • Well, Mr Taylor, we've just talked about resolution - the United Nations Security Council resolution of August that talked about the creation of this Special Court, yes? That was exhibit P-337, Security Council resolution 1315. We just discussed that, yes, Mr Taylor?

  • We just discussed the creation by this resolution, yes.

  • And this was dated 14 August 2000, correct?

  • And it was requesting the Secretary-General to negotiate an agreement with the Government of Sierra Leone to create an independent Special Court consistent with the resolution. We just talked about that, yes, Mr Taylor?

  • Again the date for this - so that we're clear on it for this resolution - was 14 August 2000. Now, Mr Taylor, it wasn't long after this resolution that your government announced the adoption of a new policy of disengagement relating to the RUF. Isn't that correct, Mr Taylor?

  • Well, that's why I asked you to repeat the question. Because the disengagement from the RUF was announced in 2001. So when you say it was not long after, that's what I have a difficulty with and for different reasons. So not long after, that's what --

  • It was on 12 January 2001. Do you recall that, Mr Taylor?

  • We made the first announcement that Sam Bockarie had been expelled and that we would cease all activities in dealing with the Sierra Leonean peace process in January 2001. That is correct.

  • And in that regard, just to be sure that we have this language correct, could we please look at tab 9 in annex 4. This is S/2001/424. We see "United States Security Council S/2001/424" dated 30 April 2001, yes?

  • That is correct, yes.

  • And we see "First report of the Secretary-General pursuant to Security Council resolution 1343 (2001) regarding Liberia"?

  • And then if we look at the column on the right under number 4:

    "The measures that the council took note of in resolution 1343 (2001) are the ones announced by the Government of Liberia on 12 January 2001. They include:

    (a) The adoption of a new policy of disengagement by which the government would no longer support the activities of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF). It called on RUF to lay down its arms."

    Then if we look at (c):

    "All persons connected with the RUF were ordered to depart from Liberia."

    Then we look at number 5:

    "On 7 February 2001 the Government of Liberia announced the departure from Liberia of Sam Bockarie, alias Maskita, and the closure of the RUF liaison office in Liberia."

    Mr Taylor, your government took those actions in January 2001 because of your concern that you would become a defendant before the Special Court of Sierra Leone. Isn't that correct?

  • It's total nonsense. We took those as a result of Security Council resolution 1343 that demanded those actions, not as a result of an impending court. That's total nonsense. It's a result of the resolution that demanded certain things from Liberia, and in trying to comply we're taking these measures, not because of any court. Resolution 1343 is what we are responding to.

  • And, Mr Taylor, you talked about the departure of Sam Bockarie out of Liberia, and you talked about that on 27 October 2009. Do you recall that, Mr Taylor?

  • 27 October 2009. Your testimony, Mr Taylor?

  • I don't recall the exact date, I mean, but I did testify about that.

  • And when you testified about that, you indicated that indeed you threw Sam Bockarie out of Liberia under very intense pressure from the international community and trying to convince Kabbah that he would not pose any harm to the Sierra Leonean government. Then:

    "I had no reason for this young man to die, not one bit of reason. He left, and to make sure I was not accused, I had no contact with him while he was outside."

    Do you remember telling the Court that --

  • That's my evidence.

  • -- on 27 October, Mr Taylor?

  • That's my evidence. That is correct.

  • Mr Taylor, you also became aware, did you not, in 2001 that the former Head of State of the former Yugoslavia had in fact been arrested and transferred to the Yugoslav Tribunal for trial?

  • Yes, there was information in the press that a former President had been arrested. I'm not sure about the year, I will take your word for it, but I did - I'm not sure if it's 2001 or what. But I do remember that there were reports that the former President had been arrested.

  • And your legal people would have been very interested in that arrest and transfer to the Yugoslav Tribunal, wouldn't they, Mr Taylor?

  • Not necessarily. My legal people had already advised me, if that's where you're going, that the Special Court in Sierra Leone was the Special Court in Sierra Leone and it was a Chapter VII court and that it was not an issue for Liberia. So it would not be of concern to them.

  • So you had been given advice about the Special Court in Sierra Leone, Mr Taylor?

  • Oh, we were - yes, we were concerned about the Special Court in Sierra Leone, and once it was special we - and it was a local court, that was sufficient for me. I've already testified to that.

  • When you say "we were concerned"?

  • I'm talking about the government. Sorry, I always speak that way when I say "we", because no one person represents the government. We, the Government of Liberia, hired lawyers to look into this. The Government of Liberia even went to the International Court of Justice to speak clarification on this. The government.

  • And the Government of Liberia which was concerned, you - as the President of Liberia, you were one of those who was concerned, isn't that right?

  • Well, I wouldn't put it quite that way. I wouldn't put it quite that way. The way you put it would suggest that I had done something wrong. I may be wrong. I may be jumping the gun. I was concerned, you know, because, quite frankly, I've never supported these kinds of United Nations hybrid courts.

  • So, Mr Taylor, what was actually the nature of your concern if it wasn't a concern about you being a possible defendant before this court?

  • My concern, to answer your question correctly, was the possibility of certain actions regarding the court and other things prolonging the war in Sierra Leone. That was my principal concern; how would people react; would that mean that we would continue to have crisis? These were my concerns.

  • And those concerns included the possibility you would be a defendant before that court. Isn't that right?

  • I've just told you that we always saw the Sierra Leonean court as a Chapter VI court that dealt with the territorial jurisdiction of Sierra Leone. I've said that and I still stand by that.

  • Mr Taylor, when you said you went to the International Court of Justice, you went to clarify what?

  • Well, after the indictment was unsealed in 2003, the Government of Liberia hired international lawyers to look into the issue of Sierra Leone trying to extend its jurisdiction beyond its borders and that it could not do that.

  • Now, Mr Taylor, when you were testifying on 4 November you stated that you were not aware Sam Bockarie had been indicted in May 2003 when he was killed. Do you remember telling the judges that?

  • I didn't know the list of people that had been indicted. No, I didn't know that Bockarie was indicted. We knew generally that the leaders, but as to the number of individuals, I had no running list. But we knew generally that the leaders would be indicted.

  • Mr Taylor, that's not correct, is it? In fact, Mr Taylor, on 10 March 2003, the Special Court for Sierra Leone publicly announced its first seven indictments. Isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • So you expect me to know? I've just told you I did not know. We knew generally. I did not follow up on the running list of who were indicted. I've told you.

  • And, Mr Taylor, that public announcement included the name of Sam Bockarie. Isn't that correct, Mr Taylor?

  • And you in fact were aware of such an announcement, were you not?

  • I was not aware of the announcement, no.

  • And it would have been very important for you to be aware of this announcement. Isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • Well, I don't know why it would have been important. It would not have been important for me to know. Why would it be? Sam Bockarie is out of Liberia, that's very clear. Why would it be of importance to me? None.

  • Now, if we could look at tab number 142 in annex 1, please. It should be tab number 149 in annex 1. It would be in binder 2 of 3.

  • These tabs, of course, don't go up to number 100. What is the tab number, actually?

  • In this context, Madam President, if you'll look at binder 2 of 3 and you'll look at the cover of it, but then if you look in the binder itself, because the tabs only go up to 100, you'll see 49. On the binder itself, it indicates tabs 56 to 150 on the outside. So then if you would look at tab which is numbered 49.

  • Is it a UNDP report?

  • It should be Amnesty International --

  • I'm sorry, Madam President, it's 142. I apologise, Madam President. It should be 142. I will in a moment refer to 149. Number 142, in annex 1, and it will be listed as 42. There's an Amnesty International document.

  • Ms Hollis, we don't have a tab 142. That's why I was asking. Our tabs go to 100 and then they begin again with 1.

  • That's correct, Madam President, and the binder title on the outside indicates that it is up to 150, I believe, and then internally you will find it under tab 42 in that binder. It's binder 2 of 3. So it would be 42. It is an Amnesty International document.

  • I don't have Amnesty International. I have a document headed "Memorandum on Economic and Financial Policies of the Federal Government of Nigeria".

  • Your Honour, you have that under tab 42? I don't know quite know how that happened. If we look at the screen we see the document which in our master copy would be in binder 2 of the binders for annex 1 and internally it would be 42. However, I don't know how it got changed in your binders. But if you look at the document on the overhead, that is the document that I am referring to.

  • It is under binder 43. Has everybody found it? Okay, please proceed.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • Now that we have this document, we see:

    "Amnesty International, public statement, news service number 078, 2 April 2003. Sierra Leone: First indictments before the Special Court for Sierra Leone.

    On 10 March 2003 the Special Court for Sierra Leone announced its first indictments. Seven people were indicted by the Special Court for war crimes, crimes against humanity and other serious violations of international humanitarian law falling within the jurisdiction of the Special Court. They are" - and then it lists them, "including Sam Bockarie (Mosquito), a leading RUF member."

    And then if we look at the third paragraph:

    "Five of those indicted are now in the Special Court's custody. International warrants of arrest have been issued for Johnny Paul Koroma and Sam Bockarie. Johnny Paul Koroma evaded arrest in January 2003 following an attack on a military compound in the capital, Freetown. Sam Bockarie is reported to be in Liberia, where the government of President Charles Taylor has supported the RUF. Reports also suggest that Sam Bockarie is associated with armed opposition groups in Cote d'Ivoire. The Prosecutor has called for them to be handed over to the Special Court as indicted war criminals."

    Now, Mr Taylor, this Amnesty public statement is dated 2 April, referring to 10 March 2003 announcement by the Special Court of its first indictments. Now, Mr Taylor, you were made aware of this information, were you not?

  • With all due respect, counsel, I have told you I was not aware of the names of the individuals. I knew that indictments were being issued on the leadership. I was not aware of this Amnesty document that you have put before me.

  • Madam President, if I could ask that be marked for identification.

  • Certainly. The Amnesty International report on "Sierra Leone: The first indictments before the Special Court" dated 2 April 2003 is marked MFI-368.

  • And I would ask that we also look at what we have marked as - it should be in the same binder. It is 149, but in binder 2 for annex 1, it would be noted as number 49. This should be a BBC News report. Let's see if we have problems with that as well.

  • It should be in 50 in our binder.

  • We are talking about "Surprise at Sierra Leone arrests", BBC News, 11/03/03. Is that the article your Honours have at 50?

  • We see this now on the screen, BBC News, world, Africa, Surprise at Sierra Leone arrests. It is dated Tuesday, 11 March 2003. If we look at the second page of this article under "extradition request" we see "The chief prosecutor has also called on West African countries harbouring the former rebel commander Sam Bockarie and the former military leader Johnny Paul Koroma to hand them over."

    Then if we go down to the fourth paragraph:

    "Sam Bockarie, known by his rebel name Mosquito, is one of the country's most notorious rebel leaders.

    He left Liberia in February last year where he had sought refuge following pressure on that country by the United Nations.

    He was reported to be in Ivory Coast."

    Now, Mr Taylor, you were made aware of this 11 March BBC article, weren't you?

  • No. In fact --

  • And you were made aware of the request that Sam Bockarie and Johnny Paul Koroma be handed over. Isn't that right, Mr Taylor?

  • No, that is not correct. In fact, if I had been aware that the Prosecutor of the Special Court was asking for somebody to be extradited I would have torn the paper up, because no prosecutor asked for extradition. These are governmental matters. I would have torn it up. I was not aware. Surely, truthfully I was not aware. The Prosecutor of the Special Court doesn't call on a government to extradite somebody. Governments extradite to government. I mean, it would have been foolish for me. But quite frankly, I was not aware of it.

  • Madam President, if I could ask that that be marked for identification.

  • The BBC report dated 11 March 2003 entitled "Surprise at Sierra Leone Arrests" is marked MFI-369.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • Mr Taylor, contrary to what you've told these judges, from 1993 you were aware of the possibility that you would face prosecution for war crimes. Isn't that correct?

  • That is not correct. That is not correct.

  • And you were also aware from 1993 that you would face prosecution for crimes against humanity?

  • And, Mr Taylor, your public statements were made with such an awareness in mind. Isn't that correct?

  • Mr Taylor, do you recall on 16 November when I asked you about the number of weapons that were eventually destroyed in Liberia?

  • I remember the question. I don't remember the exact date of the question.

  • Do you remember replying that:

    "Numbers I'm not going to fight about. I don't recall the exact amounts, but I can accept that you're being fair about your numbers that you are calling."

    Do you remember saying that, Mr Taylor?

  • Yes. If you are looking at the UN report, yes.

  • I then mentioned that, "Just to be sure that I'm accurate, we'll return to that at a later time."

    Now, Mr Taylor, if we could look at MFI-121, which is DCT-16. That was tab 32 in binder 1 of 4 for week 33. If we could bring that all the way down so we can see the top of the page. We see "UNOL, office of the representative of the Secretary-General", and a date 5 January 2000.

    "Note to His Excellency Monie Captan, Minister of Foreign Affairs, statistics on arms and ammunition destroyed by the UN, ECOWAS and the Government of Liberia."

    Then, Mr Taylor, it indicates that it is attaching copies detailing the status of the arms and ammunition destroyed between July and October 1999. It indicates a final report and an accompanying financial report would be submitted to your office shortly, meaning the office of His Excellency Monie Captan. That is signed by the officer in charge UNOL, Ambassador Bariyu Adeyemi. If we can look at annex 1, at the top it is MFA/18, where the lists the types of heavy weapons and types of small arms that are the subject of the report. Then if we could look at annex 2, MFA/19, "Final status of the weapons destruction exercise on 18 October 1999". It gives a summary, and it indicates that the total number of arms of all sizes destroyed was 19,297. That's consistent with your recollection, Mr Taylor?

  • I have no problems with this report, counsel.

  • Indeed, Mr Taylor, this was the total number of arms of all sizes that had been destroyed, and these were arms of all sizes that had been turned in by all the factions, correct?

  • Then, Mr Taylor, just to be sure that we have a clear picture relating to this number, if we could look at P-32, please. If we could look at the first page of that exhibit, 32, we see "United Nations Security Council S/2001/1015" and again a letter dated 26 October 2001, sending the report of the panel of experts as an annex signed by the chairman, Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1343 concerning Liberia". Then if we could turn to the page that at the top has in large numbers "00004468". "4468" at the top. And if we could look at paragraph 154, which discusses the weapons destruction programme in 1999, indicating that the exercise began on 25 July. And here it says:

    "... involved the destruction of 19,000 small- and heavy-calibre weapons and more than 3 million rounds of ammunition".

    And if we can look, please, at the sixth line down where it says:

    "About 40 per cent of these weapons were rusted or unusable, but others were in good working order."

    So of the weapons destroyed, some 40 per cent of them were either unusable or rusted. Were you made aware of that, Mr Taylor?

  • I saw the report.

  • So we now have numbers as reported by the United Nations relating to the weapons destruction.

    Now, Mr Taylor, do you recall on 16 November being asked about your request that ECOMOG downsize and reduce its numbers to around 1,500 troops? Do you recall being asked about that?

  • And you were actually asked about that request made on two different occasions, and you were first asked about making such a request about the time of the signing of the Yamoussoukro IV agreement, which was the end of October, and you indicated that you don't recall giving a specific number. You really can't recall that; that there would be a 1,500 somewhere, but you really can't recall it.

    If we could look at tab 32 in annex 4, which is "ECOMOG: A Sub-Regional Experience in Conflict Resolution, Management and Peacekeeping in Liberia"?

  • Ms Hollis, did we mark the BBC article or were you not interested?

  • Yes, we did. I marked it 369.

  • So there should have been two marked. But that was marked, correct?

  • Amnesty International and the BBC.

  • So if we could look at page 101 at tab 32 in annex 4. This is tab 32 in annex 4, and it should be "ECOMOG: A Sub-Regional Experience in Conflict Resolution, Management and Peacekeeping in Liberia".

    Madam President, while we are getting that document might I ask you to mark for identification a document I referred to, but did not request such marking. That was the document at tab 9, annex 4, which was first report of the Secretary-General, S/2001/424. I apologise for my oversight.

  • That document is marked MFI-370.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • If we could put the title page on, please, the first page. "ECOMOG: A Sub-Regional Experience in Conflict Resolution and Peacekeeping in Liberia." Then if we could please look at page 101. If we could look at the bottom of that page, please. The sixth line up from the bottom, the sentence beginning with "obviously":

    "Obviously taking its cue from the Carter proposition, Taylor, in a BBC interview in October 1991, asked ECOMOG to reduce its strength from 8,000 to 1,500".

  • But what is this document? Who is the author of this document? Because --

  • We have talked about this before, Mr Taylor.

  • I just saw the top page of this document, so we haven't talked about this before.

  • This is the book we've talked about before, Lieutenant Colonel Festus B Aboagye.

  • Yeah, but how would I know that this page is from that book unless I see who did it? That's why I asked.

  • Mr Taylor, you were shown the front page of the book, and if you could please put the second page on that shows the author. Now, Mr Taylor, in October 1991 you asked ECOMOG to reduce its strength from 8,000 to 1,500. Isn't that correct?

  • Well, my evidence remains the same. I don't know as to whether this book is any authority on that, so I cannot change my testimony at the - my evidence at the time was that I was not quite - you know, I couldn't play the figures to make sure and I'm not even sure that this is an authoritative source, so I couldn't change my evidence.

  • Madam President --

  • Ms Hollis, I'm recalling that when this document was first brought to our notice, and I'm referring to the page ending in 42999 and over the page, there was an objection I think from the Defence that this was an opinion, this work was an opinion of somebody, and I thought we did rule on it, that you couldn't use it.

  • I don't think you ruled on the entire book, Madam President. I think you ruled on the page that was referred to previously. There was no - I certainly never made an argument about the entire book. I was arguing about the page that we were dealing with at the time and the reference in that page. That's my recollection, Madam President.

  • So you've asked questions relating to the last four lines on page 101 and are you asking me to mark this for identification yet?

  • You're asking me to mark it for identification.

  • Yes. And, Madam President, I will be referring to other portions of this book on this topic, so I would ask that we have a cumulative exhibit dealing with this book and this page would be A of that MFI.

  • This is a book by Lieutenant Colonel Festus B Aboagye and the page in question is 101 and that page is marked for identification MFI-371A.

  • Thank you, Madam President:

  • Now, Mr Taylor, on 16 November we continued to talk about your calls to reduce ECOMOG down to - by 1,500 people and I asked you if you recalled asking again on 21 April 1992 that ECOMOG be reduced by 1,500 people or to 1,500 people. Do you recall that, Mr Taylor? And that was - that question to you about the 21 April 1992 request was at page 31769.

  • What's your question, counsel?

  • Do you recall being asked about that on 16 November, Mr Taylor?

  • Not the precise date. I can remember be asked several times about this. I have said that I don't know the correct number, whether I said 1,500, just as I've said about this book. It's not authoritative, so --

  • And, indeed, you stated at page 31770 that you didn't remember the exact numbers, but you did call for a reduction in terms of overall comportmentation. Do you remember that reply?

  • Yes. Something to that extent, yes.

  • Now, if we could look at tab 21 in annex 3. This should be the book by Dr Adebajo, "Liberia's Civil War: Nigeria, ECOMOG and Regional Security in West Africa". If you could put the cover page of that book --

  • This is already MFI-330.

  • I believe we had specific pages, but perhaps we could add these pages to it?

  • I don't know if this assists, Madam President, but my note is that pages 91 and 187 of this book have already been marked for identification as MFI-330.

  • Yes, it does help, but I think the Court Officer was looking for the first page to put on the overhead and they couldn't locate the first page. I think now they have. Please put the first page on the overhead.

  • We see "Liberia's Civil War: Nigeria, ECOMOG and Regional Security in West Africa. Adekeye Adebajo". And if we could turn to page 103, please, and if we could look at the second full paragraph on the page beginning "after the conference" and if we could go to the sixth line down:

    "At a week-long national conference in Gbarnga that began on 21 April, Taylor repeated his call for a reduction of ECOMOG forces to 1,500."

    Mr Taylor, to put this date in context, if we could look up at the first full paragraph on this page it talks about a peace conference that took place in ailing Ivorian leader Felix Houphouet-Boigny's winter home in Geneva between 6 and 7 April 1992. Then we move to 21 April. Now, Mr Taylor, 21 April 1992 there was this week-long national conference in Gbarnga, correct?

  • And at that conference you asked for a reduction of ECOMOG forces down to 1,500. Isn't that correct?

  • Counsel, I don't want to belabour this point. I asked for the reduction of ECOMOG forces. I have told this Court a million times, I don't remember the exact amount. Now, these publications, you are trying to portray them as being authoritative. I'm not going to change my evidence.

  • Mr Taylor, I'm not asking you to change your evidence. If you still do not remember --

  • Now, Madam President, we have, as you indicated, previously marked the book - two pages of the book as an MFI. It was in connection with another topic that questions were being asked about, and so we would ask that we have a different MFI for this page and subsequent pages that we would refer to in relation to the current topic.