The UN Security Council [official website] on Friday elected [UN News Centre Report] to extend the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) [official website] to March 2018. The mandate of UNMIL was also broadened to “comprise protection of civilians, reform of justice and security institutions, protection and promotion of human rights, public information activities, and protection of UN personnel and installations.” The Council noted that this will be the final extension of the Mission in Liberia. UN forces in Liberia were reduced by close to 75 percent. UNMIL began in 2003 and was a response to numerous reports of human rights abuses.
Liberia has received international scrutiny for years for alleged and proven war crimes. In April, a 49-year-old Liberian man was arrested [JURIST report] in Pennsylvania in connection with war crimes committed in the 1990s. In September 2013, the UN-backed Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) rejected an appeal [JURIST report] by former Liberian president Charles Taylor of his convictions for war crimes [JURIST report] committed during the decade-long civil war in Sierra Leone.