Mr. Speaker, last week the special court in Sierra Leone announced the indictment of Liberian President Charles Taylor for war crimes and crimes against humanity. Taylor was visiting Ghana at the time.
Unfortunately, although Ghana was given advanced notice of this indictment, they allowed Taylor to leave Ghana rather than arresting him.
Now President Taylor is attempting to link the success of the Liberian peace process to the lifting of the indictment against him. Under no circumstances should the Sierra Leone special court indictment against Taylor be lifted.
Charles Taylor has a long history of using peace processes to buy time, to rest and re-equip his fighters with the hope that the international community will forget his record of aggression and terror. Between 1989 and 1997, for instance, Taylor negotiated and broke 13 separate peace agreements.
If we are ever going to end the culture of impunity, we must support this special court and others in the future whose objective is to bring to justice those charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity.