Liberian ex-warlord Boley defends war record
By Frank Sainworla, Jr/WADR News
A Liberian ex-warlord deported from the US for his role in the his country’s civil war, Dr. George Boley has dismissed allegations that he and his defunct rebel group committed atrocities during the 14 years civil war, which ended in 2003.
“I have seen the things that were written and said about me and they’re all false. No one has produced a scintilla of evidence,” Boley said in an interview with West Africa Democracy Radio (WADR) at the weekend.
“Our people (Liberians) are so gullible,” said Boley, who headed the erstwhile Liberia Peace Council warring faction in the 1990s and is recommended for prosecution by Liberia’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).
He said he is not afraid to face his accusers, if they can produce evidence he committed war crimes during the civil, which claimed an estimated 250,000 people with thousands of others wounded.
“Listen, our people are so gullible, they take on anything and everything that sounds good and they pick up on things they do not understand. Unless anyone can produce the evidence of all these allegations, I really wouldn’t have any comment to make,” Boley told WADR.
He was arrested in 2010 and prosecuted in an American court for leading a rebel faction responsible for human rights abuses during the country’s civil war which ended in 2003.
A US immigration judge last month ordered his deportation under the Child Soldiers Accountability Act of 2008, which was modified to include recruitment and use of child soldiers as grounds for deportation.
But the Liberian ex-rebel leader denied ever violating US immigration law and accused US authorities of violating his rights by illegally detaining him for over two years. Thousands of children were recruited into Boley's LPC group and the more than half a dozen of other rebel factions.
Describing the American immigration system as “broken”, Boley insisted that he did not violate American immigration law.
Earlier, media reports in Monrovia quoted Liberian officials as saying that a “note verbal” from the US embassy in Monrovia to Liberia’s Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization indicated that Boley left the United States on his own volition.
“It is true that the government of the United States sent this note verbal indicating that I left the United States on my own volition and I’m home…that’s the most important thing,” said the LPC ex-rebel leader left America on his own volition.
But now that he’s back home and settling down on home soil, what does Boley make of his deportation?
The former Liberian rebel leader was Guest on the Newslink show on WADR hosted by Frank Sainworla.
Click audio below to listen