Rep. Johnson’s Bipartisan Resolution Affirming Strong U.S.-Liberian Ties Passes House
H.Res. 1055 calls for full implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommendations
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On the same day as more than 4,000 Liberians marched in their capital Monrovia for justice and support for a war crimes court, Congressmen Hank Johnson (GA-04) and Dan Donovan (NY-11) passed H.Res. 1055, which affirms strong United States-Liberia ties, supports democratic principles, and calls for full implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommendations, including the establishment of an Extraordinary Criminal Tribunal for Liberia.
H.Res. 1055 passed by voice vote.
Liberia, a country formed by former slaves from the United States, in 1847 became the first African republic to proclaim its independence and is Africa’s first and oldest modern republic.
The Liberian Civil War, which lasted from 1991 to 2002, resulted in the deaths of more than 200,000 people in Sierra Leone and Liberia, the displacement of more than a million people, and horrific cases of amputations, mass rape, and human rights abuses that were conducted under the leadership of Charles Taylor.
Although Charles Taylor was convicted and sentenced to 50 years for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and violations of international law, many who committed these heinous crimes have eluded justice.
Liberia’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission released a report in December 2008, recommending the establishment of an Extraordinary Criminal Tribunal for Liberia and listing individuals, corporations, and institutions recommended for further investigation and prosecution.
“Nearly a decade later, Liberia has not yet established an Extraordinary Criminal Tribunal,” said Johnson. “Liberians are still yearning for the justice that has been repeatedly denied over the past 10 years since the issuance of the report. Today’s peaceful march through the streets of Monrovia show their hunger for justice. We support efforts to hold perpetrators of war crimes accountable and urge the government of Liberia to fully implement the recommendations of the Commission.”