UN Discusses Special Court of Sierra Leone With RUF

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(Rapaport…January 14, 2002) Members of the United Nations planning mission working on the establishment of the Special Court of Sierra Leone met with members of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) and two other warring factions on January 13. Assistant secretary-general for legal affairs Ralph Zacklin, who is leading the mission, originally said he would not meet with RUF leaders. In talks with the groups, Zacklin said the court will prosecute only individuals, not groups or organizations, and that the court will maintain independence, assured by the appointment of an international prosecutor appointed by UN secretary-general Kofi Annan.

The special court will try persons in Sierra Leone accused of war crimes, crimes against humanity and other violations of international human rights laws committed since November 1996, the date of the Abidjan Peace Accord.

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