Taylor: I didn’t know Sierra Leone rebel pre-1991

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THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Prosecutors are accusing former Liberian President Charles Taylor of lying to judges at his war crimes trial about when he first met a brutal Sierra Leone rebel leader he is accused of helping commit atrocities.

The accusation has come at the resumption of Taylor’s cross examination after the Special Court for Sierra Leone’s Christmas break.

Taylor said Monday he never met Foday Sankoh before Sankoh unleashed a savage attack on Sierra Leone in 1991 that spawned a 12-year civil war.

Prosecutors allege the pair hatched a plot to attack Sierra Leone years earlier at a military training camp in Libya. The claim is central to charges that Taylor supported and funded Sierra Leone rebels from his presidential mansion in the Liberian capital, Monrovia.