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U.S. flags Liberia’s mob violence

The United States Government says mob violence and vigilantism are common and often result in deaths and injuries in Liberia due in part to the public’s lack of confidence in the police and the judicial system.

In its damning 2022 Human Rights report on Liberia, the U.S. said although mob violence sometimes targeted alleged criminals, it was difficult to determine underlying reasons for attacks because cases were rarely prosecuted. 

“Nevertheless, mob violence and vigilantism, due in part to the public’s lack of confidence in [the] police and the judicial system, were common and often resulted in deaths and injuries,” the report said.

This week, the United States Government released its 2022 Human Rights report that has documented significant human rights issues in Liberia.

It documented unlawful or arbitrary killings, including extrajudicial killings, cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment by the government, harsh and life-threatening prison conditions, and arbitrary arrest or detention.

The report also noted serious problems with the independence of the judiciary, serious restrictions on freedom of expression and media, including violence and threats of violence against journalists, and serious government corruption.

The U.S. 2022 Human Rights report also speaks of a lack of investigation and accountability for gender-based violence, including a child, early, and forced marriage, and female genital mutilation/cutting.

Additionally, it detailed crimes involving violence or threats of violence targeting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex persons, and the existence and enforcement of laws criminalizing consensual same-sex sexual conduct between adults.

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The U.S. Human Rights report says impunity continued for individuals who committed human rights abuses, including atrocities during two civil wars, as multiple investigative and audit reports were ignored. 

It accuses the government of having made intermittent but limited attempts to investigate and prosecute officials accused of abuses during the year, whether in the security forces or elsewhere in the government. 

It explained that the law here prohibits “discrimination and vilification” of persons with HIV and AIDS, but the LDHS found no measurable change since 2007 in popular attitudes, which remained broadly discriminatory toward persons with HIV and AIDS.

The report said persons with disabilities could not access education, health services, public buildings, and transportation on an equal basis with others. 

“The constitution prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities, but these prohibitions were not always enforced,” the report said.

It continued that most government buildings were not easily accessible to persons with mobility impairment. 

And, the report noted that the government did not provide information and communication on disability concerns in accessible formats. 

It said sign language interpretation was often not provided for deaf persons in criminal proceedings or in the provision of state services. 

“Election ballots were not available in braille, but visually impaired voters could be accompanied by a sighted helper in the voting booth,” the report said. 

It noted further that persons with disabilities lacked equal access to social, economic, and political opportunities and were among the most vulnerable population groups in the country. 

It disclosed that few children with disabilities had access to education. In 2019-20, it noted, less than one percent of students in public schools had a disability, suggesting that nearly all school-age children with disabilities were out of school. 

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One Comment

  1. “serious problems with the independence of the judiciary, serious restrictions on freedom of expression and media, including violence and threats of violence against journalists, and serious government corruption.”

    What freedom of expressions when Liberia’s social media landscape is bossed with insults of the president and all government officials with impunity?

    What freedom of expressions when Yeke Kolubah, Henry Coasta and Martina Konateh,.and others ate daily insulting a sitting president of a country with impunity? Nobody does that in America or in the west! Is it? Are there freedom in America for Americans to openly insult Joe Biden mother, his wife and his children including his government officials in public?
    Are there freedoms in America to threaten violence ahainst Joe Biden, do Americans openly threaten to take guns to Joe Biden residence, as Yeke
    Kolubah does to president Weah in Liberia?

    This is nonsensical! Why is the State.Department playing a blind eye to these opposition provocations? Why is the so called State Department not flagging Yeke Kolubah, Henry Coasta and Martina Konateh who are openly inciting violence in Liberia?

    How credible are the CIA agents in Liberia including, Rodney Sieh, Koffi Woods, Kenneth Y Best, Dempster Brown, and the insider Musah Dean since they all opposition figures?

    Indeed, the US is playing with the lives of innocent Liberians by hatching up another round of violence!

    We have seen this movie before in the 90s against late president Doe!

    Did America learn lessons from its strategic blunders in Liberia then?

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