Liberia. The unrest in Northwest Liberia intensified and the fighting left at least 60,000 people homeless. According to Countryaah website, national day of Liberia is every July 26. The rebel force Liberians united for reconciliation and democracy (LURD) moved ever closer to the capital Monrovia. LURD was believed to be largely veterans of the Civil War in the 1990s.
In February, President Charles Taylor announced a state of emergency when the Rebels stood just three miles from Monrovia. In April, public meetings and demonstrations were banned. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch accused the authorities of committing grave protections against civilians under the pretext of fighting the rebels. The state of emergency was lifted in September, when the army claimed to have forced the LURD to retreat.
In May, the UN Security Council extended its financial sanctions against Liberia by one year. The sanctions include an arms embargo, a halt to Liberian diamonds and a departure ban for the country’s leaders. The embargo was introduced in 2001 as punishment for Liberia’s support for the rebel movement RUF in Sierra Leone.
In July, the World Postal Association and foreign airlines stopped the postal service to and from Liberia after many years of non-payment.
U.S. court rules against former warlord
A court in the USA has ruled that the 30-year prison sentence against Mohammed Jabbateh, a former warlord in Liberia, is upheld. Jabbateh, also known as Jungle Jabbah, was convicted of lying about his role in the Liberian civil war in the 1990s, when he told US authorities that he did not belong to any armed group.
Demands for measures against increased sexual violence
Thousands of black-clad people are gathering outside Parliament in Monrovia to protest that President George Weah’s government is not doing more to prevent rape. According to the organization Women Empowerment Network, more than 600 rapes were registered between June and August. The protesters demand that more money be sent to bring more people to justice and that more be done to help the victims. According to a UN report, only two percent of all reported cases of sexual violence in 2015 had led to convictions. During the civil wars from 1989 to 2003, sexual violence was used as a weapon, according to UN data, between 61 and 77 percent of all women. The country has since adopted new laws where women’s protection has been strengthened.