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24 May 2004 by -

A former Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, Pierre-Richard Prosper, was appointed by George W. Bush in May 2001 to the post of Ambassador-at-large for war crimes issues. From Iraq to Rwanda and Sierra Leone to Indonesia, Prosper defends the interests of American diplomacy and monitors all sensitive legal cases. IJT: Will those responsible for the abuse of prisoners in Iraq be prosecuted for war crimes?

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24 May 2004 by -

A start date for the trial of three former leaders of the Civil Defence force (CDF) - Sam Hinga Norman, Moinina Fofana and Allieu Kondewa - has been set for 3 June by the Special Court for Sierra Leone. The decision was announced by the trial chamber on 12 May. The CDF was the main armed group fighting for the civilian government of Ahmad Tejan Kabbah, president-elect of Sierra Leone since 1996. The trial has been one of the most eagerly awaited by Sierra Leoneans, many of whom see Hinga Norman, who was Minister of the Interior at the time of his arrest a year ago, as a national hero.

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07 June 2004 by Thierry Cruvellier and Kelvin Lewis

Freetown, 3 June 2004. All the signs pointed to a smooth opening day in the trial of Sam Hinga Norman, national coordinator of the Civil Defence Forces (CDF), his number two, Moinina Fofana, and Allieu Kondewa, responsible for initiation ceremonies for the pro-government militia.

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25 July 2005 by -

On 14 July, Sierra Leone-born prosecutor Joseph Bangura made a brief statement marking the end of the year-long prosecution phase for the three exmembers of the Civil Defence Force (CDF) before the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL). In a year peppered with protests and defendants boycotting their trial, the prosecution produced 75 witnesses to testify against CDF coordinator Sam Hinga Norman, director of war Moinina Fofana and High Priest Allieu Kondewa. On 3 June, 2005, Norman wrote a letter to the UN Secretary General, accusing the Court of "bias, injustice and corruption".

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22 November 2004 by -

Sam Hinga Norman, the former national coordinator of the Civil Defence Force (CDF), the principal armed group to back the return of the civilian authorities to Freetown, has apparently prepared a list of around 100 witnesses to defend him before the Sierra Leone special court, according to the local newspaper Concord Times. The paper says that both the court and Norman\'s co-counsel deny that such a list exists.

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07 February 2005 by KELVIN LEWIS

The youthful interim leader of the former Rebel Revolutionary United Front (RUF) movement, the self-styled General Issa Sesay, has ordered his former battle group commander Morris Kallon to join him and all the other defendants in the ongoing war crimes trials in Sierra Leone to boycott court hearings.

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18 October 2004 by Thierry Cruvellier

For those who have followed the tribulations of the Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) for almost three years, its official report, which was published on 5 October, constitutes a small miracle. No one could have predicted such a logically structured, abundantly detailed, and well-written report two years ago when the Commission almost dissolved itself through sheer negligence. Even a year ago when the report was first due out, hopes for a turnaround were not high.

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05 March 2007 by -

For Sierra Leoneans, the trial of Sam Hinga Norman was the most important to come before the Special Court created in 2002 in Freetown. The former head of the Civil Defense Forces (CDF) was considered by many a hero in the war. For others, he was also responsible for the crimes against humanity committed by the CDF. Indicted in 2003 while he was Minister of the Interior of a democratically elected government, Norman consequently represented a major legal and historical issue. "Does being at the head make you a criminal? What brought me to call on the civil defense?

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