4. Liberia (1943-present)

 

Pre-Crisis Phase (May 4, 1943-April 13, 1979):  William V. S. Tubman of the True Whig Party (TWP) was elected to an eight-year term as president on May 4, 1943, and he was inaugurated as the 18th president of Liberia on January 3, 1944.  Amendments to the Constitution were approved in a referendum held on May 4, 1943. Vice-President Clarence L. Simpson led a five-member delegation to the United Nations Conference in San Francisco in May and June 1945.  Liberia celebrated the 100th anniversary of its founding on July 26, 1947.  In early 1950, the government proclaimed a state of emergency in the town of Harbel as a result of labor unrest by workers at the 80,000-acre Firestone Rubber Company plantation beginning in December 1949.  President Tubman sent troops to Harbel after riots broke out at the plantation on February 4, 1950.  On January 11, 1951, the governments of Liberia and the U.S. signed an agreement to provide a U.S. Military Training Mission in Liberia.  The U.S. Military Training Mission, consisting of several U.S. military personnel, arrived in Monrovia on August 27, 1951.  President Tubman was re-elected on May 1, 1951, and he was inaugurated for second term in January 1952.  William R. Tolbert of the TWP was elected as vice-president.  Americo-Liberian women and indigenous Liberians who owned property were allowed to vote for the first time in the 1951 elections.  Previously, only the male descendants of Americo-Liberians had the right to vote.  The Liberia government entered a mutual defense agreement with the U.S. government on November 19, 1951.  President Tubman was re-elected with 99.5 percent of the vote on May 3, 1955, and he was inaugurated for a third term in January 1956.  Amendments to the Constitution were approved in a referendum held on May 3, 1955.  President Tubman survived an attempted assassination in Monrovia on June 22, 1955. Thirty members of the Independent True Whig and Reformation Party, including former Solicitor-General Raymond J. Horace,  were arrested and imprisoned for their involvement in the attempted assassination.  One of the individuals involved in the assassination plot, former Minister of the Interior Samuel David Coleman, was killed along with his son Joseph S. Othello Coleman, during an arrest attempt on June 27, 1955.  Two government security personnel were also killed on June 27, 1955.  The U.S. government deployed a Military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG), consisting of 17 military personnel, in Liberia in 1956.  President Tubman was re-elected with more than 99 percent of the vote on May 5, 1959, and he was inaugurated for a fourth term in January 1960.  The governments of Liberia and the U.S. signed a military defense agreement on July 8, 1959.  In September 1961, President Tubman declared a state of emergency to deal with a general strike and riots.  On February 5, 1963, Colonel David Y. Thompson, commander of the Liberian national guard, was arrested along with four other individuals for plotting to assassinate President Tubman.  President Tubman was re-elected without opposition on May 7, 1963, and he was inaugurated for a fifth term on January 4, 1964.  In July 1965, Raymond J. Horace and three other individuals involved in the 1955 attempted assassination of President Tubman were released from prison.  As a result of labor unrest, President Tubman was granted emergency powers by the parliament for twelve months beginning on February 9, 1966 (the emergency powers were extended for another twelve months in 1967).  President Tubman began a two-month leave of absence in Switzerland on August 7, 1966.  James Bass, secretary-general of the Liberian Congress of Industrial Organizations (LCIO) was arrested for sedition and imprisoned on November 25, 1966.  James Bass, secretary-general of the LCIO, was released from prison on February 10, 1967.  Legislative elections were held on May 2, 1967, and the TWP won 52 out of 52 seats in the House of Representatives.  President Tubman was re-elected without opposition on May 2, 1967, and he was inaugurated for a sixth term in January 1968.  Henry Fahnbulleth, former Liberian ambassador to Kenya and Tunisia, was convicted of treason and sentence to 20 years in prison in August 1968.  Legislative elections were held on May 4, 1971, and the TWP won 52 out of 52 seats in the House of Representatives.  President Tubman was re-elected without opposition on May 4, 1971.  President Tubman died in London, England on July 23, 1971, and Vice-President William R. Tolbert Jr. became provisional president on July 23, 1971. William Tolbert was inaugurated as the 19th president of Liberia on January 3, 1972.  Amendments to the Constitution, including lowering the voting age from 21 to 18, were approved in a referendum held on April 4, 1972.  On March 15, 1973, former Assistant Defense Minister for Coast Guard Affairs, Prince N. A. Browne, and two other individuals were arrested and charged with plotting to assassinate President Tolbert and overthrow the government.  Legislative elections were held on October 7, 1975, and the TWP won 71 out of 71 seats in the House of Representatives.  President Tolbert was re-elected without opposition on October 7, 1975, and he was inaugurated for an eight-year term on January 5, 1976.  An amendment to the Constitution imposing presidential term limits was approved in a referendum held on October 7, 1975.  Vice-President James E. Green died on July 22, 1977, and he was succeeded by Bennin D. Warner of the TWP in August 1977.  The governments of Liberia and Guinea signed a non-aggression and mutual defense treaty on January 23, 1979.

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Crisis Phase (April 14, 1979-December 23, 1989):  The Progressive Alliance of Liberia (PAL) headed by Gabriel B. Matthews organized a demonstration against the government in Monrovia on April 14, 1979.  President Sekou Toure of Guinea offered to assist the government, and President Tolbert accepted the offer.  Government troops and 100 Guinean troops suppressed the demonstration on April 14-15, 1979, resulting in the deaths of at least 40 individuals.  The parliament granted President Tolbert emergency powers for twelve months.  Guinean troops withdrew from the country on May 15, 1979.  Gabriel B. Matthews founded the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) in December 1979.  President Tolbert was killed during a military coup led by Master Sergeant Samuel K. Doe, a member of the Krahn ethnic group, on April 12, 1980.  More than 25 individuals were killed during the military coup. The People’s Redemption Council (PRC) headed by Sergeant Doe took control of the government on April 12, 1980.  The Libyan government provided diplomatic assistance (diplomatic recognition) to the PRC on April 13, 1980. The PRC executed four individuals on April 17, 1980, and executed 13 individuals on April 22, 1980. The PRC declared martial law, and suspended the constitution on April 25, 1980. The U.S. government provided military assistance to the PRC from 1980 to 1989, and mobilized naval ships and troops in the area in support of President Samuel Doe between April 1, 1981 and May 10, 1981.  Government troops suppressed a military rebellion on May 29-30, 1981, and thirteen military personnel were executed for their involvement in the military rebellion. Government troops suppressed a military rebellion led by Major General Thomas Weh Syen on August 8-10, 1981. On August 14, 1981, Major General Weh Syen and four other members of the PRC were executed for their involvement in the military rebellion.  Government troops suppressed a military rebellion on November 21, 1983, and 13 individuals were sentenced to death for their involvement in the military rebellion on April 5, 1984.  President Doe repealed the death sentences for 10 of the 13 individuals on April 7, 1984.  A new constitution was approved in a national referendum held on July 3, 1984.  The PRC was formally dissolved on July 21, 1984, and the ban on political party activity was lifted on July 26, 1984.  The government suppressed a rebellion on August 19, 1984.  Government troops suppressed demonstrations in Monrovia on August 22, 1984, resulting in the deaths of 16 individuals.  President Doe survived an attempted assassination on April 1, 1985, and Lt. Colonel Moses Flanzamaton was executed for his involvement in the attempted assassination on April 7, 1985.  Legislative elections were held on October 15, 1985, and the National Democratic Party of Liberia (NDPL) won 51 out of 64 seats in the House of Representatives.  The Liberian Action Party (LAP) won eight seats in the House of Representatives.  Samuel Doe of the NDPL was elected president with 51% of the  vote on October 15, 1985, and he was inaugurated as president on January 6, 1986.  Opposition political parties claimed election fraud.  Brig.-General Thomas Quiwonkpa led an unsuccessful military rebellion against the government on November 12-15, 1985, resulting in the deaths of more than 500 individuals.  The Liberian Action Party (LAP), Liberian Unification Party (LUP), and Unity Party (UP) formed a political coalition against the government on March 16, 1986.  In August 1986, the government lifted the ban on the United People’s Party (UPP) led by former Foreign Minister Gabriel B. Matthews.  The government suppressed a military rebellion led by General Nicholas Podier on July 13, 1988, resulting in the deaths of ten individuals.

Conflict Phase (December 24, 1989-August 17, 1996):  The National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL), which consisted largely of Gio and Mano tribesmen led by Charles Taylor, launched a rebellion against the government beginning on December 24, 1989.  The governments of Bulgaria and Libya provided military assistance (weapons and ammunition) to the NPFL.  The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) established the Standing Mediation Committee (SMC) consisting of representatives from Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Nigeria, and Togo on April 15, 1990.  In what was referred to as Operation Sharp Edge, U.S. military personnel evacuated 61 Americans and 12 other individuals from the U.S. Embassy in Monrovia and from the town of Brewerville on August 5, 1990.  On August 24, 1990, ECOWAS deployed the ECOWAS Monitoring Group (ECOMOG-Liberia) to monitor the cessation of military hostilities; to provide security for the government; to restore law and order; and to assist with the demobilization/disarmament process.  ECOMOG consisted of some 13,500 troops from 13 countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Uganda) commanded by Major-General Joshua Nimyel Dogonyaro of Nigeria.  President Doe was captured and killed by a dissident faction of the NPFL headed by Prince Yormie Johnson on September 9-10, 1990. Assistant Secretary of State Herman Cohen of the US mediated a temporary ceasefire agreement between the parties on September 18-22, 1990.  Amos Claudius Sawyer served as President of the Interim Government of National Unity from November 22, 1990 to March 7, 1994.  On November 28, 1990, the political factions signed an ECOWAS-mediated ceasefire agreement in Bamako, Mali, and the political factions signed another ECOWAS-mediated ceasefire agreement in Banjul, Gambia on December 21, 1990.  Medicins Sans Frontieres (MSF) established a mission to provide humanitarian assistance to civilians beginning in 1990.  Some 400,000 individuals fled as refugees to neighboring countries in 1990.  ECOWAS-SMC mediated a ceasefire agreement on October 30, 1991, but military hostilities resumed on November 5, 1991.  NPFL rebels launched a military offensive against government troops and ECOMOG peacekeeping troops in Monrovia on October 15, 1992.  The ECOWAS imposed economic sanctions (ban on exports) and military sanctions (arms embargo) against the NPFL on October 20, 1992.  The UN Security Council imposed military sanctions (arms embargo) against the parties on November 19, 1992.  The UN secretary-general appointed Trevor Livingston of Jamaica as special representative for Liberia in November 1992. The International Rescue Committee (IRC) established a mission to provide humanitarian assistance to Liberian refugees in the Ivory Coast and Guinean in 1992.  Some 600 individuals were killed in an attack near Harbel on June 6, 1993.  The UN Security Council condemned the attack on June 7, 1993.  The UN secretary-general appointed a three-member commission of inquiry (Egypt, Kenya, and US) to investigate the massacre at Harbel.  The UN commission of inquiry issued a report on September 10, 1993, which placed the responsibility for the Harbel massacre on the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL).  The parties signed a ceasefire agreement mediated by the UN, Organization of African Unity (OAU), and ECOWAS in Cotonou, Benin on July 25, 1993.  The ceasefire went into effect on August 1, 1993.  On September 22, 1993, the UN Security Council established the United Nations Observer Mission in Liberia (UNOMIL) to monitor the ceasefire; to assist with provision of humanitarian assistance; and to monitor the disengagement/disarmament of the NPFL.  At its maximum, the military component of UNOMIL consisted of 303 military observers from 22 countries commanded by Major-General Daiel Ishmael Opande of Kenya (October 1993-May 1995), Major-General Mahmoud Talha of Egypt (December 1995-June 1996), Colonel David Magomere of Kenya (June 1996-December 1996), and Major-General Sikander Shami of Pakistan (December 1996-September 1997).  On August 7, 1993, the UN secretary-general appointed a three-member commission of inquiry (Egypt, Kenya, US) to investigate human rights abuses.  The UN commission of inquiry issued a report on September 10, 1993.  David Donald Kpormakpor served as the first Chairman of the Council of State from March 7, 1994 to September 1, 1995.  The rival political factions resumed military hostilities in May 1994.  The UN Security Council appealed for a ceasefire on May 23, 1994.  President Jerry Rawlings of Ghana, Chairman of the ECOWAS, mediated negotiations in Akosombo, Ghana on September 6-12, 1994.  Representatives of the three largest factions in Liberia, including Lt. General Hezekiah Bowen  (AFL), Charles Taylor (NPFL), and Alhaji Kromah (ULIMO), signed the Akosombo Agreement (supplement to the Cotonou Accord) on September 12, 1994.  Among other provisions, the agreement provided for an immediate ceasefire.  President Jerry Rawlings of Ghana, chair of ECOWAS, mediated negotiations between representatives of all seven Liberian factions in Accra, Ghana from November 21 to December 21, 1994.  The parties signed a ceasefire agreement in Accra on December 21, 1994.  Anthony Nyakyi of Tanzania served as special representative of the UN secretary-general from December 1994 to April 1997.  ECOWAS-SMC and Nigeria mediated the signing of the Abuja Agreement by six Liberian factions on August 19, 1995, and the Liberia National Transition Government (LNTG) was established in Monrovia on September 1, 1995.  Wilton Gbakolo Sengbe Sankawulo served as Chairman of the Council of State in the LNTG from September 1, 1995 to September 3, 1996.  Several thousand individuals were killed during clashes between April 6 and August 17, 1996.  The UN Security Council appealed for a ceasefire on May 6, 1996.  The factions signed the ECOWAS-mediated Supplement to the Abuja Accord on August 17, 1996, resulting in an immediate cessation of military hostilities.  Some 200,000 individuals were killed, and some 750,000 individuals were displaced during the conflict.  Some 700 ECOWAS personnel were killed during the conflict.

Post-Conflict Phase (August 18, 1996-April 19, 1999):  Ruth Sando Perry was appointed as Chairperson of the Council of State in the Liberian National Transitional Government (LNTG) on September 3, 1996.  Some 21 civilians were massacred in Sinje on September 28, 1996.  Some eleven individuals were massacred in Bloun on December 7, 1996.  Tuliameni Kalomoh of Namibia served as special representative of the UN secretary-general from April to September 1997.  Legislative elections were held on July 19, 1997, and the National Patriotic Party (NPP) won 49 out of 64 seats in the House of Representatives.  The Unity Party (UP) won seven seats in the House of Representatives, and the All-Liberia Coalition Party (ALCOP) won three seats in the House of Representatives. Charles Taylor was elected president with 75 percent of the vote on July 19, 1997.  UNOMIL-electoral unit deployed some 300 observers to monitor the elections beginning on April 15, 1997.  The European Union (EU), OAU, and ECOWAS sent 30 observers to monitor the elections.  The Carter Center (CC) sent 40 observers headed by Jimmy Carter of the US and Nicephore Soglo of Benin to monitor the elections from June 26 to July 21, 1997.  ECOWAS lifted sanctions against the government on September 1, 1997.  UNOMIL was disbanded on September 30, 1997.  UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan established the United Nations Peace-Building Support Office in Liberia (UNPSOL) on November 1, 1997.  UNPSOL consisted of seven personnel headed by Felix Cyril Downes-Thomas of Gambia. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) established a mission to provide repatriation assistance to Liberian refugees in December 1997.  Samuel Saye Dokie, an opposition politician, was murdered along with two other individuals in Bong County on December 4, 1997.  One individual was killed in political violence in Monrovia on December 16, 1997.  ECOMOG-Liberia was disbanded on February 2, 1998, but some 5,000 ECOWAS military personnel remained in the country to train the government’s security forces and to maintain order beginning on February 3, 1998.  Government troops clashed with supporters of General Roosevelt Johnson in Monrovia on September 18-20, 1998, resulting in the deaths of more than 1,000 individuals.  The UNHCR assisted with the repatriation of 80,000 refugees in 1998.

Conflict Phase (April 20, 1999-June 17, 2003):  The Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD) was established by Liberian refugees in opposition to the government, and LURD rebels launched an insurgency against the government on April 20, 1999.  Some 100 individuals were massacred in Nikagabozu, Lofa County on August 11, 1999.  Some 20 civilians were killed in Swen, Bomi County on October 10, 1999.  Some 50,000 individuals were displaced from their homes in 1999.  ECOWAS withdrew its remaining military personnel from the country on October 23, 1999.  Government troops and LURD rebels clashed near the town of Voinjama on July 8-31, 2000, resulting in the deaths of 47 rebels and 12 government soldiers.  President Charles Taylor declared a state-of-emergency in northern Liberia on July 19, 2000.  The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) provided humanitarian assistance to displaced individuals beginning on September 21, 2000.  LURD rebels attacked the village of Zorzor in October 2000.  Some 50,000 individuals were displaced from their homes in northern Liberia in 2000.  The UN Security Council lifted military sanctions (arms embargo) against Liberia on March 7, 2001.  Government troops killed some 200 civilians between April and July 2001.  The UN Security Council imposed economic sanctions (travel ban and ban on rough diamond exports) and military sanctions (arms embargo) against the Liberian government on May 7, 2001.  EU foreign ministers imposed military sanctions (arms embargo) against the government and rebels on May 7, 2001.  Government troops clashed with LURD rebels in Zorzor district in northern Liberia on May 31-June 1, 2001.  Government troops and LURD rebels clashed in northern Liberia on December 1-2, 2001, resulting in the deaths of five government soldiers and 35 rebels.  Government troops and LURD rebels clashed near Foya on December 6, 2001, resulting in the deaths of 28 rebels. LURD rebels attacked the town of Kley on February 7, 2002.  President Taylor declared a state-of-emergency on February 8, 2002.  LURD rebels attacked the Todee military base on April 2, 2002.  LURD rebels attacked the town of Kakata on April 3, 2002, resulting in the deaths of three individuals.  LURD rebels attacked the town of Tubmanburg on April 4, 2002.  Tiawon Gongloe, a human rights lawyer, was arrested by government police on April 24, 2002. On May 1, 2002, the EU condemned the government for the torture of Tiawon Gongloe while in police custody.  Government troops and LURD rebels clashed near the town of Gbarnga on May 9-16, 2002, resulting in the deaths of 100 rebels.  United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Kofi Annan condemned LURD rebels on May 15, 2002.  ECOWAS appealed for a ceasefire between government troops and LURD rebels on May 20, 2002.  Government troops recaptured the town from LURD rebels on Tubmanburg on July 19, 2002, resulting in the deaths of some 100 rebels. Government troops recaptured the town of Voinjama from LURD rebels on August 13, 2002. Government troops recaptured the town of Bopolu from LURD rebels on September 11, 2002. The government lifted the state-of-emergency on September 14, 2002. Government troops and rebels clashed near the town of Zorzor on December 7, 2002.  The ECOWAS appointed Abdulsalami Abubakar of Nigeria as mediator on May 6, 2003.  Representatives of the government, LURD, and the Movement for Democracy in Liberia (MODEL) signed an ECOWAS-mediated ceasefire agreement in Accra, Ghana on June 17, 2003.  Some 50,000 individuals were killed, and some 250,000 individuals were displaced during the conflict.

Post-Conflict Phase (June 18, 2003-present):  On July 8, 2003, UN Secretary-General appointed Jacques Paul Klein of the U.S. as UN Special Representative for Liberia.  On July 25, 2003, U.S. President George W. Bush ordered the deployment of U.S. military personnel off the coast of Liberia in support of the deployment of ECOWAS peacekeeping troops in Liberia.  On August 1, 2003, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1497, which authorized the establishment of a multinational force to support the implementation of the ceasefire agreement.  The ECOWAS appointed Ambassador Francis Blain of Gambia as Special Envoy to Liberia on August 4, 2003.  On August 4, 2003, the ECOWAS deployed the ECOWAS Mission in Liberia (ECOMIL) to maintain law and order; to monitor the ceasefire agreement; to monitor disengagement, disarmament, and demobilization programs; and to protect the delivery of humanitarian assistance.  The ECOMIL consisted of 3,556 peacekeeping troops from eight countries (Nigeria, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Senegal, Benin, and Togo) commanded by General Festus Okonkwo of Nigeria.  On August 14, 2003, the U.S. government deployed 4,350 military personnel (Joint Task Force-Liberia) in support of UN and ECOWAS efforts to restore law and order in Liberia as well as to provide humanitarian assistance in the country.  President Taylor resigned from office, and Vice President Moses Blah took office as president on August 11, 2003.  Representatives of the government, LURD, and MODEL signed an ECOWAS-mediated peace agreement in Accra, Ghana on August 18, 2003.  Some 26 individuals were killed in Bong County by supporters of President Charles Taylor between September 8-20, 2003.  On September 19, 2003, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1509, which provided for the establishment of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) to monitor the ceasefire, to monitor the disengagement of military forces, and to facilitate the provision of humanitarian assistance.  At its maximum, the military component of UNMIL consisted of 15,000 peacekeeping troops and 250 military observers commanded by Lt. General Daniel Opande of Kenya (October 2003-December 2004), Lt. General Joseph Owonibi of Nigeria (January 2005-December 2005), Lt. General Chikadibia Obiakor of Nigeria (December 2005-October 2008), Lt. General A. T. M. Zahirul Alam of Bangladesh (October 2008-October 2009), Lt. General Sikander Afzal of Pakistan (October 2009-November 2010), Major General Muhammad Khalid of Pakistan (November 2010-November 2012), and Major General Leonard M. Ngondi of Kenya (November 2012-present).  UNMIL, which was deployed on October 1, 2003, also included some 1,795 civilian police personnel.  ECOMIL was disbanded, and U.S. military personnel (Joint Task Force-Liberia) withdrew from Liberia on September 30, 2003.  Four ECOMIL personnel were killed during the mission.  Some 13 individuals were killed in political violence in Monrovia on October 2, 2003.  LURD rebels killed some 26 individuals in Bomi County between October 11-26, 2003.  Charles Gyude Bryant was sworn in as interim president and head of a power-sharing government on October 14, 2003.  On February 10, 2004, the Council of the EU imposed military sanctions (arms embargo) against the Liberian government and opposition groups.  On April 29, 2004, the Council of the EU imposed economic sanctions (assets freeze) against the Liberian government and opposition groups.  On July 22, 2004, the U.S. government imposes economic sanctions against former President Charles Taylor, as well as his family members, former senior government officials, and other associates.  Some 16 individuals were killed in political violence in Monrovia on October 28-31, 2004.  On October 31, 2004, Alpha Oumar Konare, Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, condemned the violence in Monrovia.  The parliament established the ten-member Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) in May 2005.  The TRC was responsible for investigating and reporting on gross human rights violations that occurred in Liberia from January 1979 to October 2003.  UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan appointed Alan Doss of Britain as UN Special Representative for Liberia beginning on August 15, 2005.  Legislative elections were held on October 11, 2005, and the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) won 15 out of 64 seats in the House of Representatives.  The Liberty Party (LP) won nine seats, the Coalition for the Transformation of Liberia (CTL) won eight seats, and the Unity Party (UP) won eight seats in the House of Representatives.  The EU sent 10 election experts, 20 long-term observers, and 40 short-term observers headed by Max van den Berg of the Netherlands to monitor the presidential and legislative elections from September 9 to November 27, 2005.  ECOWAS sent 47 observers headed by E. M. Debrah from Ghana to monitor the presidential and legislative elections from October 7 to November 12, 2005.  The National Democratic Institute (NDI) and Carter Center (CC) sent 40 observers to jointly monitor the first round of the presidential election and legislative elections from October 5 to October 13, 2005.  The International Republican Institute (IRI) sent observers to monitor the presidential and legislative elections.  Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf of the UP was elected president with 59 percent of the vote in the second round of the presidential election held on November 8, 2005, and she was inaugurated as president on January 16, 2006.  The African Union (AU) sent observers headed by Elie-Victor Essomba Tsoungui of Cameroon to monitor the second round of the presidential election from November 4 to November 9, 2005.  The NDI and CC sent 28 observers to monitor the second round of the presidential election from November 4 to November 10, 2005.  The U.S. government provided military assistance (50 military advisers) to the Liberia government beginning in 2006.  President Johnson-Sirleaf established the Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission on February 21, 2006.  On June 13, 2006, the UN Security Council conditionally lifted military sanctions (arms embargo) against the Liberian government.  The EU lifted military sanctions (arms embargo) against the Liberian government in June 2006.  On June 20, 2006, the UN Security Council lifted economic sanctions (ban on timber sales) against the Liberian government.  The EU suspended economic sanctions (ban on timber sales) against the Liberian government on July 24, 2006, and the EU lifted economic sanctions (ban on timber sales) against the Liberian government on December 11, 2006.  On April 27, 2007, the UN Security Council lifted economic sanctions (ban on rough diamond exports) against the Liberian government.  The EU lifted economic sanctions (ban on rough diamond exports) against the Liberian government on June 25, 2007.  On July 19, 2007, the government arrested five individuals, including former Speaker of the House of Representatives George Koukou, for involvement in an alleged coup attempt.  Ellen Margrethe Løj of Denmark replaced Alan Goss of Britain as UN Special Representative for Liberia on January 1, 2008.  On February 12, 2008, the Council of the EU imposed economic sanctions (travel restrictions) and military sanctions (arms embargo) against opposition groups.  The Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) issued its final report on July 1, 2009.  The report recommended that more than 50 individuals, including President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, be banned from holding public office for a period of thirty years.  On January 25, 2010, President Johnson-Sirleaf announced that she intended to run for a second term. Four individuals were killed in inter-communal violence in Lofa County on February 26, 2010.  On May 27, 2010, seven opposition political parties, including the Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) and the Liberia National Union (LNU), announced the formation of a “Grand Coalition” to challenge President Johnson-Sirleaf’s Unity Party (UP) in the 2011 elections.  In January 2011, the Liberia Supreme Court ruled that the TRC recommendation that more than 50 individuals, including President Johnson-Sirleaf, be banned from holding office for 30 years to be unconstitutional.  An amendment to the Constitution changing the voting system for legislative elections (from a two-round majority system to a single-round plurality system) was approved in a referendum held on August 23, 2011.  The CDC had called for a boycott of the referendum.  Legislative elections were held on October 11, 2011, and the UP won 24 out of 73 seats in the House of Representatives.  The CDC won 11 seats in the House of Representatives.  President Johnson-Sirleaf of the Unity Party was re-elected with 91 percent of the vote in the second round of the presidential election held on November 8, 2011.  President Johnson-Sirleaf had won 44 percent of the vote in the first round of the presidential election held on October 11, 2011.  Claiming election fraud, Winston Tubman of the CDC announced a boycott of the second round of the presidential election on November 4, 2011.  Two individuals were killed during clashed between government police and CDC protesters in Sinkor on November 7, 2011.  The African Union (AU) sent 20 observers headed by Dr. Speciosa Wandira Kaizibwe of Uganda to monitor the legislative and presidential elections from October 5 to October 12, 2011.  ECOWAS sent 150 observers headed by Attahiru Jega of Nigeria to monitor the first and second rounds of the presidential election, as well as the legislative elections, on October 11 and November 8, 2011.  The Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA) sent 18 observers to monitor the elections on October 6-14, 2011.  The Carter Center (CC) sent 50 to 55 short-term and long-term observers headed by Dr. Yakuba Gowon of Nigeria to monitor the elections from September 2011 to November 2011.  Ellen Margrethe Løj of Denmark completed her assignment as UN Special Representative to Liberia on January 31, 2012.  On April 26, 2012, former President Charles Taylor was found guilty by the Special Court for Sierra Leone of “aiding and abetting” war crimes during the Sierra Leone civil war.  On April 27, 2012, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed Karin Landgren of Sweden as Head of UNMIL and UN Special Representative for Liberia.  On May 30, 2012, former President Charles Taylor was sentenced to 50 years in prison by the Special Court for Sierra Leone.  On July 11, 2012, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf rejected accusations of nepotism.  On July 26, 2012, the UN Security Council lifted economic sanctions (asset freezes and travel bans) against 17 Liberians linked to former President Charles Taylor.  President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf suspended her son, Charles Sirleaf as Deputy Governor of the Liberian Central Bank on August 21, 2012.  On October 8, 2012, Leymah Gbowee, head of Liberia’s Peace and Reconciliation Commission (PRC), resigned her position after criticizing the government of corruption and nepotism.  On January 22, 2013, former President Charles Taylor formally appealed his conviction by the Special Court for Sierra Leone.  On July 8, 2013, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf dismissed Auditor-General Robert Kilby in a crackdown on public corruption.  Robert Sirleaf, son of President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, resigned as Chairman of the state oil company, National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL), on September 17, 2013.  Former President Charles Taylor’s conviction by the Special Court for Sierra Leone was upheld on September 26, 2013, and he was transferred to a prison in the United Kingdom to begin serving his 50-year prison sentence on October 15, 2013.  UNMIL consisted of 4,308 troops, 113 military observers, 1,417 civilian police personnel, and 397 international civilian staff personnel on December 31, 2014.  On August 12, 2015, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed Farid Zarif of Afghanistan as Head of UNMIL and UN Special Representative for Liberia.  The UN Security Council renewed military sanctions (arms embargo) against non-governmental groups for an additional nine months on September 2, 2015.  The UN Security Council also lifted economic sanctions (assets freeze and travel restrictions) against former President Charles Taylor (including family members and associates).  On October 5, 2015, the EU lifted economic sanctions (assets freeze and travel restrictions) against former President Charles Taylor (including family members and associates).  On November 12, 2015, the U.S. government lifted economic sanctions (assets freeze and travel restrictions) against former President Charles Taylor, his family members, and other associates.  UNMIL consisted of 3,306 troops, 95 military advisers, 1,318 civilian police personnel, and 358 international civilian personnel on December 31, 2015.  As of February 29, 2016, UNMIL fatalities included 137 military personnel (136 troops and one military observer), 21 civilian police personnel, and nine international civilian staff personnel.

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Selected Bibliography

Adeleke, Ademola. 1995. “The Politics and Diplomacy of Peacekeeping in West Africa: The ECOWAS Operation in Liberia.” Journal of Modern African Studies 33 (no.4): 569-593.

Olonisakin, Funmi. 1996. “UN Co-operation with Regional Organizations in Peacekeeping: The Experience of ECOMOG and UNOMIL in Liberia.” International Peacekeeping 3 (Autumn): 33-51.