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Liberia: UN hails launch of Truth & Reconciliation

Liberia: UN hails launch of Truth and Reconciliation Commission

Welcoming the formal launch of a Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) which aims to heal the societal wounds of Liberia’s brutal 14-year civil war, the top United Nations official in the country appealed for continued international support for the body.

“Today is another landmark in the process of seeking truth and justice, both of which are necessary for genuine peace and reconciliation in Liberia,” Luiz Carlos da Costa, Officer-in-Charge of the UN mission in the country (UNMIL), said yesterday at the central ceremony in the capital city of Monrovia.

While commending civil society for their relentless efforts to set up the Commission, Mr. da Costa stressed the importance of delving into the past to find out the root causes of the Liberian conflict so that a relapse into war can be prevented.

“The TRC is an unprecedented and exemplary testament to the courage we have summoned as a nation and a people, to reckon with our shameful past and to establish a consensus on national truth,” said President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, who came to office in January.

She urged all Liberians to “come forward and tell the truth. This is the greatest contribution that anyone can make to peace, reconciliation, unity and progress in Liberia.”

UNMIL supported the drafting of the national act that established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and worked closely with the Transitional Justice Working Group on the Commission’s establishment.

The UN Development Programme (UNDP) has provided the body with $600,000 for its operations.

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