Q&A: Swiss Trial for Liberia Atrocities: Universal Jurisdiction Paves Path for Justice

On December 3, 2020, the criminal trial of Alieu Kosiah, a former Liberian rebel commander, began in the city of Bellinzona, Switzerland, in the country’s Federal Criminal Court. Kosiah is the first person to be tried for war crimes in a non-military criminal court in Switzerland and is the first Liberian to be put on trial for alleged war crimes committed during the first Liberian civil war, from 1989 to 1996. This question-and-answer document provides some background to the trial, the accused, and overall efforts by Switzerland to investigate and prosecute serious crimes under international law before its national tribunals. readmore

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