Source Category: inFocus

Liberian Warlord Kosiah Wants to Overturn 2021 War Crime Ruling

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In 2021, the Federal Criminal Court of Switzerland found Alieu Kosiah, 46, guilty of war crimes perpetrated during the first of Liberia's two civil wars, sentencing him to 20 years. Kosiah is charged with 25 counts of war crimes, including murders, forced transports, looting, rape, and recruitment of a child soldier. An appeal to overturn the ruling has begun in a Swiss court where an alleged rape victiom of Kosiah brought testimony. Kosiah accusaed the trial of being a conspiracy under the control of Alain Werner, a Swiss human rights lawyer specialising in the defence of victims of armed conflicts. Kosiah was arrested in 2014 in Switzerland where he had been living as a permanent resident. According to a 2011 Swiss law, prosecution for serious crimes committed abroad may be prosecuted under the pricinciple of universal jurisdiction. He was the first Liberian to be convicted after facing charges relating to Liberia's civil war.

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