Monday, April 12, 2010

Charles Taylor’s Officers On Britain’s War Crimes Search List

Source: http://www.newdemocratnews.com/story.php?record_id=1953&sub=14

Taylor’s Officers On Britain’s War Crimes Search List

Officers from Mr. Charles Taylor’s army are amongst others British Immigration and security services will be searching for in Britain for prosecution, according to a new law that has come into force, The Independent reports. The US and some European countries have adopted new laws allowing the prosecution of war criminals from other countries who live in America or some European states.

Britain is taking serious steps to ensure that war criminals are not allowed in the UK, and amongst the caseload Immigration and security services now have is that regarding suspected Liberian war criminals, many still in the UK. The cut-off point for investigating and prosecuting war criminals in Britain is 1991, but critics say the date should be taken back as far as 1948.

There are also discussions to include non-Brtish citizens for prosecution. The US is already ahead, with the law that war criminals on its soil will be prosecuted. The Independent:
“Last year the Justice Secretary Jack Straw committed Labour to ending Britain’s alleged reputation as a haven for war criminals and said cases dating back to 1991 could be considered. That rule comes into force today (7April).

“The potential caseload for the police and the Crown Prosecution Service includes high-ranking officers from the Afghan communist-era security service. Others identified by Aegis are a member of the Sudanese Janjaweed, several Tamil Tigers from Sri Lanka, a member of the Mosquito rebel group from Sierra Leone, officers in Charles Taylor’s army in Liberia, a Somali warlord, a member of the Serb militia Arkan’s…” See full article, “Robert Verkaik: How Scotland Yard gave up hunt for war criminals.” The Independent: The decision to close Scotland Yard’s war crimes unit 11 years ago brought to an end Britain’s specialist involvement in the investigation of atrocities committed in the Second World War.

Many of the key Nazi suspects living in the UK had either died or were too ill to stand trial.

Under the old War Crimes Act brought in under Margaret Thatcher’s government only two cases ended in prosecution. A year later, in 2000, Labour was severely embarrassed by the case of General Augusto Pinochet, who was arrested in London over war crimes committed in Chile in the 1970s.

While Britain wrestled in the 1990s with the consequences of historic war crimes committed more than 50 years ago, modern genocides in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo presented Britain’s criminal justice system with a new challenge.

Newly created international war crimes tribunals established to hold to account hundreds of war criminals from Africa and the former Yugoslavia could not tackle the problem of suspects who fell outside their jurisdiction and had found safe haven in the UK.

And in 2004 the Home Office gave greater emphasis to war crimes teams of specialists who looked at immigration cases considered by the UKBA. They prioritised evidence of war crimes and passed on the names of suspects to the Metropolitan Police.

Last year the Justice Secretary Jack Straw committed Labour to ending Britain’s alleged reputation as a haven for war criminals and said cases dating back to 1991 could be considered. That rule comes into force today.

Critics of the current system believe the Government must go further. A report from Parliament’s Joint Human Rights Committee published last year said the 1991 cut-off date and a requirement that only UK residents should face prosecution would leave an “impunity gap” allowing war criminals to visit Britain without fear of prosecution. A cross-party group of MPs and peers say the 1991 cut-off date means the 1994 Rwandan massacres are covered but not the 1970s Cambodian genocide. They have urged the Government to go as far back as 1948 for genocide and 1949 for war crimes.

The potential caseload for the police and the Crown Prosecution Service includes high-ranking officers from the Afghan communist-era security service. Others identified by Aegis are a member of the Sudanese Janjaweed, several Tamil Tigers from Sri Lanka, a member of the Mosquito rebel group from Sierra Leone, officers in Charles Taylor’s army in Liberia, a Somali warlord, a member of the Serb militia Arkan’s Tigers, a rebel from Angola and several Balkan suspects.

Mr Straw said last year: “It’s important that a strong message goes out that there are not going to be any safe havens for people who have committed these kinds of crimes.” But the prosecution figures speak for themselves – not a single case in nearly 10 years. It’s time the Government made sure the CPS and the police are given the resources to turn these words into convictions.

Independent

News Headline

Inside Liberia with Bernard Gbayee Goah

Contact Me

Everyone is a genius

Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – A Einstein

Drawing the line in Liberia

Crimes sponsored, committed, or masterminded by handful of individuals cannot be blamed upon an entire nationality. In this case, Liberians! The need for post-war justice is a step toward lasting peace, stability and prosperity for Liberia. Liberia needs a war crimes tribunal or some credible legal forum that is capable of dealing with atrocities perpetrated against defenseless men, women and children during the country's brutal war. Without justice, peace shall remain elusive and investment in Liberia will not produce the intended results. - Bernard Gbayee Goah



Men with unhealthy characters should not champion any noble cause

They pretend to advocate the cause of the people when their deeds in the dark mirror nothing else but EVIL!!
When evil and corrupt men try to champion a cause that is so noble … such cause, how noble it may be, becomes meaningless in the eyes of the people - Bernard Gbayee Goah.

If Liberia must move forward ...

If Liberia must move forward in order to claim its place as a civilized nation amongst world community of nations, come 2017 elections, Liberians must critically review the events of the past with honesty and objectivity. They must make a new commitment to seek lasting solutions. The track records of those who are presenting themselves as candidates for the position of "President of the Republic of Liberia" must be well examined. Liberians must be fair to themselves because results from the 2011 elections will determine the future of Liberia’s unborn generations to come - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's greatest problem!

While it is true that an individual may be held responsible for corruption and mismanagement of funds in government, the lack of proper system to work with may as well impede the process of ethical, managerial, and financial accountability - Bernard Gbayee Goah

What do I think should be done?

The situation in Liberia is Compound Complex and cannot be fixed unless the entire system of government is reinvented.
Liberia needs a workable but uncompromising system that will make the country an asylum free from abuse, and other forms of corruption.
Any attempt to institute the system mentioned above in the absence of rule of law is meaningless, and more detrimental to Liberia as a whole - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's Natural Resources
Besides land water and few other resources, most of Liberia’s dependable natural resources are not infinite, they are finite and therefore can be depleted.
Liberia’s gold, diamond, and other natural resources will not always be an available source of revenue generation for its people and its government. The need to invent a system in government that focuses on an alternative income generation method cannot be over emphasized at this point - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia needs a proper system
If Liberians refuse to erect a proper system in place that promotes the minimization of corruption and mismanagement of public funds by government institutions, and individuals, there will come a time when the value of the entire country will be seen as a large valueless land suited on the west coast of Africa with some polluted bodies of waters and nothing else. To have no system in place in any country is to have no respect for rule of law. To have no respect for rule of law is to believe in lawlessness. And where there is lawlessness, there is always corruption - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Solving problems in the absence of war talks

As political instability continues to increase in Africa, it has become abundantly clear that military intervention as a primary remedy to peace is not a durable solution. Such intervention only increases insecurity and massive economic hardship. An existing example which could be a valuable lesson for Liberia is Great Britain, and the US war on terror for the purpose of global security. The use of arms whether in peace keeping, occupation, or invasion as a primary means of solving problem has yield only little results. Military intervention by any country as the only solution to problem solving will result into massive military spending, economic hardship, more fear, and animosity as well as increase insecurity. The alternative is learning how to solve problems in the absence of war talks. The objective of such alternative must be to provide real sustainable human security which cannot be achieved through military arm intervention, or aggression. In order to achieve results that will make the peaceful coexistence of all mankind possible, there must be a common ground for the stories of all sides to be heard. I believe there are always three sides to every story: Their side of the story, Our side of the story, and The truthBernard Gbayee Goah

DISCLAIMER

Statements and opinions expressed in articles, reviews and other materials herein are those of the authors. While every care has been taken in the compilation of information on this website/blog, and every attempt made to present up-to-date and accurate information, I cannot guarantee that inaccuracies will not occur. Inside Liberia with Bernard Gbayee Goah will not be held responsible for any claim, loss, damage or inconvenience caused as a result of any information within these pages or any information accessed through this website/blog. The content of any organizations websites which you link to from this website/blog are entirely out of the control of Inside Liberia With Bernard Gbayee Goah, and you proceed at your own risk. These links are provided purely for your convenience. They do not imply Inside Liberia With Bernard Gbayee Goah's endorsement of or association with any products, services, content, information or materials offered by or accessible to you at said organizations site.