Foreign Policy Blogs

Special Court for Sierra Leone Scraping By Despite High Profile Case

The Special Court for Sierra Leone is in a dire financial situation according to Chief Prosecutor Stephen Rapp who appealed to the U.N. Security Council today for more funds. Mr. Rapp described the situation as “an impending crisis” and warned of a break-down of the courts functionality without additional resources:

Even if all pledged donations from donors for this year come in early, our funds will run dry before next year’s round of donations, and the Special Court will not have the resources necessary to complete its work.

This plea comes during the week of testimony of the Court’s highest profile defendant, former Liberian President Charles Taylor. Mr Taylor is on trial facing eleven counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity including sexual slavery and the use of child soldiers. His trial is expected to wrap up mid-2010 with the finalization of the appeals process to conclude in 2011. Without proper funding justice may be unduly delayed. Mr. Taylor called the allegations against him “diabolical lies” on the witness stand this week before the Special Court of Sierra Leone. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges against him.



Brandon Henander
Brandon Henander

Brandon lives in Chicago and works as a Project Coordinator for Illinois Legal Aid Online. He has a LL.M. in International Law and International Relations from Flinders University in Adelaide. Brandon has worked as a lobbyist for Amnesty International Australia and as an intern for U.S. Congressman Dave Loebsack. He also holds a B.A. in Political Science, Philosophy and Psychology from the University of Iowa. His interests include American and Asian politics, human rights, war crimes and the International Criminal Court.

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