Liberia Rebels Allegedly Kill 200 Foreigners
Rebels have killed about 200 foreigners in Liberia whose governments contributed soldiers to a West African force sent to end the nation’s civil war, the Ghana News Agency reported today.
The news agency, which has a reporter with the five-nation force, quoted witnesses as saying the civilians, including many Ghanaians and Nigerians, were killed after the military contingent landed in Monrovia, Liberia’s main port.
The agency quoted unidentified Ghanaians who said they escaped the attack by guerrillas loyal to rebel leader Charles Taylor, who has vehemently opposed intervention by the West African force.
About 3,000 soldiers from Ghana, Nigeria, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Gambia arrived in Monrovia on Aug. 25 on troop transport ships under orders to end the eight-month tribal war.
Taylor’s fighters have attacked the force on several occasions.
The news agency quoted a 36-year-old Ghanaian teacher, Kwasi Kwateng, as saying rebels attacked a community of 2,500 Ghanaians in Barnesville, about 3 miles from Monrovia’s port.
It was not immediately clear how many casualties occurred in Barnesville or if killings also occurred in other areas. The report also did not specify when the killings happened.
The news agency quoted Kweku Egyir, 52, a Ghanaian who has lived in Liberia since 1963, as saying Taylor’s men were singling out Ghanaians and Nigerians because their countries’ soldiers have inflicted many casualties on the rebels.