Wednesday, June 19, 2013 04:05
GOL Reacts To Human Rights Reports
Story by Garmonyou Wilson
The Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism (MICAT) has categorically denounced a recent report by an American Human Watch Group alleging that the government is not doing enough to contain cross border attacks from Liberia into La Cote D'Ivoire, and to stop the recruitment of children from being used in the attacks.
The Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Lewis Brown at the Ministry's weekly press briefing said, “Liberia has no incentive to either threaten its neighbors or encourage attacks against other countries.”
Minister Brown stated further that the Liberian government has and will continue to pursue a decided policy which prohibits even in an inch of Liberian soil from being used to destabilize neighboring countries. This policy is repeatedly exemplified in President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf as Chairperson of the Mano River Union and Liberia's participation in numerous regional, continental and global efforts for peace, democracy and security.
“Our experience has shown that the short and long term interests of our region and our countries are best preserved by investing in peace and security, at home and in our sub-region. This is why Liberia and La Cote D'Ivoire have been deeply engaged, at the highest levels, in meetings growing out of which a joint-security cross border operation involving the relevant authorities of the two countries and the UN Military Mission in both countries is to be carried out shortly,” the Information Minister stated.
The Government Spokesman also disclosed, “Extradition proceedings are being advanced through the courts to return suspected individuals arrested on the Liberian side to La Cote D'Ivoire for possible prosecution.”
Minister Brown asserted that Human Rights Watch failed to contact authorities of both countries, adding that it would have easily confirmed the extent of consultations which are ongoing between the two countries; the nature of the agreements reached and the level of commitments which are being demonstrated by practical actions by both sides to raid these non-state actors who are threatening the peace and security in the two countries.
“Liberia hopes that it would not need to persuade anyone that a threat of insecurity to La Cote D'Ivoire which is coming from along Liberia's border is a threat to Liberia's own security. If there is a country on the face of the earth which is determined to neither support nor facilitate cross border attacks with its neighbors, that country is Liberia,” the Information Minister concluded.