Sunday, December 07, 2003

Liberia: tiny hitch as disarmament begins

About 1,000 fighters handed in their weapons to UN peacekeepers and headed off to disarmament camps ... 39,000 more fighters left to disarm.

According to Reuters, some fighters were disappointed to learn they wouldn't get $300 up front for handing in their guns ... and they went back home, guns in hand. They receive the first $150 at the end of the three-week demobilization program ... and the balance once they were living in their communities for three months.

And this other thing ...
The chief of staff of the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD), the biggest rebel group, said his fighters could not disarm because peacekeepers had yet to deploy to the rebel base of Tubmanburg.

"Who will we disarm to?" Mohammed Sheriff asked on Saturday.

"We don't know exactly what benefits the fighters will get."