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- The departure of a warlord (Liberia) - 13.08.2003
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Charles Taylor stepped down as president of Liberia and flew into exile in Nigeria, and left beind a country ravaged by 14 years of war and chaos. The warlord turned president bowed to intense pressure from western and African leaders as well as the rebels who control most of the countryside and much of the capital, Monrovia.
His luxury vehicles and other belongings loaded on to an aircraft, Taylor (55) left with relatives for Calabar, in south-eastern Nigeria where three houses have been set aside for what is supposed to be a quiet retirement.
Since launching a bush rebellion in 1989 and becoming president in 1997, Taylor has been accused of deepening Liberia’s chaos and fomenting conflicts in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Ivory Coast.
At a ceremonial handover of power in Monrovia, he asked the international community to help Liberia and said history would be kind to him. “I have fulfilled my duties.
The vice president, Moses Blah, was sworn in. After placing his left hand on the Bible and raising his right, he began his presidency with a moment of silence for all those have died in Liberia’s wars.
Rebels have rejected him as a Taylor crony whose strings could be pulled from Calabar, but their guns and mortars stayed silent. President George Bush promised to help once Taylor left. today after death and chaos the people savour the relieved by welcoming the departure of a warlord.