Two convicted war criminals have received long prison sentences. The former president of Liberia, Charles Taylor, has been sent to gaol for 50 years for aiding and abetting rebels in Sierra Leone during the civil war of 1991-2002.
The judge at The Hague acknowledged that Taylor had never set foot in Sierra Leone, but declared he had ‘been found responsible for aiding and abetting some of the most heinous crimes in human history.’
The former president backed rebels from the Revolutionary United Front, who killed tens of thousands of people, employing a strategy of murder, rape, and hacking off limbs. Taylor, who is 64, says he will appeal.
Meanwhile, in Rwanda, Callixte Nzabonimana, a former youth minister, has been found guilty by a court in Tanzania of genocide and other crimes during the 100 days of madness in 1994, which saw 800,000 people murdered. He was imprisoned for life, but he too says he will appeal.