Sierra Leone war crimes trial verdict welcomed..first since Nuremberg
Human rights groups have welcomed the guilty verdict against former Liberian leader Charles Taylor.
The UN-backed Special Court for Sierra Leone in The Hague said he aided and abetted war crimes during the Sierra Leone civil war.
Taylor, 64, has been on trial for almost five years.
“This is an incredibly significant decision,” Elise Keppler from the campaign group Human Rights Watch told the BBC.
“Charles Taylor has been called to account for the crimes in Sierra Leone. It is an incredible day for international justice but most of all for victims in Sierra Leone and everywhere,” she added.
Taylor was accused of backing rebels who killed tens of thousands of people in Sierra Leone’s 1991-2002 civil war. He was convicted on 11 counts including terror, murder and rape – but cleared of ordering the crimes.
He is the first former head of state convicted by an international court since the Nuremburg military tribunal of Nazis after World War II.
Another group, Amnesty International, said the verdict sent an important message to all high-ranking state officials.
hes the first since nuremberg but i expect a whole lot more to flow now..mainly african leaders as well..and the odd gaddaffi trial..