Dear Liberians,

I’m writing to prolong my thank you to the folks of Liberia for an overly significant discuss with in October of this 12 months. On my first go back and forth to Liberia, I very a lot preferred the chance to meet with, and listen to from, quite a lot of policymakers, lawmakers, individuals of the media, and Liberians who shared with our delegation their views at the potentialities for justice in Liberia. I owe particular thank you to Pastor Janice Gonoe, who gave me an overly transferring excursion of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, the place 600 Liberians misplaced their lives once they sought sanctuary on this position of worship.

Liberia faces many demanding situations when it comes to justice and responsibility, no longer handiest for the horrible warfare crimes dedicated throughout two consecutive civil wars, but additionally for next crimes and corruption. Impunity is corrosive; when it’s allowed to flourish in a single sector, it’ll undermine the principles of peace and the guideline of regulation throughout a complete society.

The overwhelming message we heard on our discuss with was once a choice for the ones with the ability to achieve this to put into effect the vital suggestions of the 2009 Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Liberia (TRC). These suggestions replicate the knowledge of Liberian leaders and professionals in regulation, human rights, theology, and journalism. The TRC commissioners had been tasked with the superior accountability for producing a framework to save you a go back to mass violence in Liberia, solution the decision of sufferers and survivors for justice, and grasp responsible the ones maximum accountable for warfare crimes and different atrocities.

Notwithstanding the advice of the TRC to identify an Extraordinary Criminal Court for Liberia, with a mandate to examine warfare crimes and financial crimes, the one justice Liberians have loved to date has passed off in international courts. This contains the new verdict in France towards Kunti Kamara, who was once sentenced to existence imprisonment for complicity in crimes towards humanity, torture, and acts of barbarism. Currently, two instances are continuing in U.S. courts towards former insurrection normal Laye Sekou Camara and previous Armed Forces of Liberia commander Moses Wright for fees similar to misrepresenting their wartime behavior on immigration bureaucracy in makes an attempt to evade responsibility. My discuss with adopted at the heels of a civil judgment in Pennsylvania towards Moses Thomas, organising his legal responsibility for the Lutheran Church bloodbath and leading to an $84 million damages award to sufferers. Because he absconded from the United States, this judgment hasn’t ever been paid. And simply sooner than my delegation and I arrived in Liberia, a go well with was once filed within the ECOWAS Community Court of Justice on behalf of the survivors of the bloodbath at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church. The fundamental declare: that Liberia has failed to supply sufferers justice.