Families of Ivorians fear extradition amounts to "death sentence"
Relatives of some of the 41 Ivorian nationals, who are said to be pro Gbagbo fighters extradited over the weekend for reported involvement in subversive activities, say they are worried about their safety.
A court in Southeastern Liberia last week ruled in favor of the extradition of some 41 suspected Ivorian dissidents to be tried in their home country. But they wanted to be tried in Liberia.
The suspects are said to have committed multiple crimes against humanity, including rape and murder in both Liberia and Ivory Coast.
But family members, who are in refugee camps in Liberia’s southeastern Grand Gedeh County, say the court in Liberia that sanctioned their extradition have endangered their lives.
The suspected Ivorian dissidents returned were in prison at the National Palace of Correction in Liberia’s southeastern city of Zwedru when the June 8 ambush of UN peacekeeping soldiers took place in the Ivorian border town of Tai. In that raid 7 UN troops were killed along with 10 civilians.
Speaking when the men were returned to the Ivory Coast at the Toe Town border post in Southeastern Liberia over the weekend, a spokesperson of the aggrieved relatives said the court ruling against their family members amounted to a "death sentence".
Lawyers representing the alleged dissidents had earlier filed a writ to block their extradition.
Click audio below to listen to WADR’s Monrovia Correspondent William Selmah’s report.
According to Liberia’s Solicitor General Wilkins Wright, the accused have been in detention at the maximum Zwedru Correction Palace since they were arrested in April last year, while entering Liberia with weapons and vehicles.
It was the same month the New Forces rebels loyal to current President Alassane Ouattara and backed by French troops captured former President Laurent Gbagbo, who is now facing trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Netherlands.
He’s being charged for crimes against humanity.Tweet