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UN diplomats still seeking country to take Taylor after trial

[JURIST] In the wake of a request [press release, PDF] from the UN-supported Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) [official website] that the trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] be transferred for security reasons, members of the UN Security Council said Tuesday that they were having difficulty finding a country willing to take in Taylor after a verdict is reached. Both Austria and Sweden have rejected requests to take Taylor [JURIST report] and the Netherlands has said it will host the trial only if he is taken to another country following the trial. Funding for the trial has also proved problematic. Though there is a projected trial cost of $25 million, only $9 million in pledges and $6 million in funding has been received by the Special Court thus far. The UN Security Council must adopt a resolution [JURIST report] permitting Taylor's transfer to The Hague, and UK Ambassador to the UN Emyr Jones Parry said Tuesday that he was hopeful a resolution would be approved by the end of the week.

Taylor, who was arrested [JURIST report] in Nigeria in March while trying to flee to Cameroon, faces 11 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity under an amended indictment [PDF text; PDF case timeline] for his role in Sierra Leone's decade-long civil war and for masterminding several West African regional conflicts that claimed up to 300,000 lives. He is currently being held in the court penitentiary in Freetown, Sierra Leone. AP has more.

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