The United Nations Security Council is expected to approve a draft resolution early next week to allow the trial of Liberia’s ex-President, Charles Taylor, to move to The Hague. Britain, which drew up the draft, says he threatens regional stability. Taylor was captured on Tuesday as he tried to flee Nigeria, where he’d been living in exile. On Monday he is due to appear before the Special Court in the Sierra Leone capital, Freetown.
Fearing his supporters might spark unrest there and in neighbouring Liberia, the Special Court had already asked The Netherlands to host the trial. As soon as practical arrangements, such as security, have been completed prosecutor Desmond de Silva says the hearing will be ready to go. “The rules of the court provide for the court being able to sit outside Sierra Leone,” he says.
Taylor, who has been indicted for war crimes and crimes against humanity, is accused of selling diamonds and buying weapons for Sierra Leone rebels, who were notorious for maiming civilians during their decade-long war. Tens of thousands of people died during the conflict which also spread to several neighbouring countries.