Sierra Leone. Following a raid against an armistice in the capital Freetown in January, some 40 people were arrested. But the man who was suspected of lying behind the attack, former junta leader Johnny Paul Koroma, escaped and managed to leave the country. According to Countryaah.com, Sierra Leone Independence Day is April 27. In March, Koroma was indicted in his absence when the UN-backed Special Crimes Tribunal in Sierra Leone began its operations. Among the other defendants in the first round were the leader of the RUF militia, Foday Sankoh, the supreme responsible for the outbreak of the civil war, and three of his commanders as well as Interior Minister Sam Hinga Norman. He was, during the war, the leader of the Kama Jormilis, who stood on the side of the legal government but was accused of almost as much brutality as the RUF.
|Gross domestic product (GDP)||$ 11,550,000,000|
|GDP growth rate||3.70%|
|GDP per capita||1,600 USD|
|GDP by sector|
|Proportion of the population below the national poverty line||70.2%|
|Distribution of household income|
|Industrial production growth rate||14.00%|
|National debt||63.90% of GDP|
|Foreign exchange reserves|
|Number of visitors||44,000|
Later, charges were also brought against Liberian President Charles Taylor, who has long been identified as deeply involved in the war in Sierra Leone. Although Taylor was forced to resign in August, however, he escaped being extradited. After a couple of initial interrogations with Foday Sankoh, the War Criminal Tribunal decided that he had to undergo both medical examination and mental examination before the process could continue. At the end of July, Sankoh died before the trial started. From Liberia, reports had previously been received that both the wanted Johnny Paul Koroma and the accused RUF commander Sam Bockarie had been killed in battle.
In August, former President Joseph Saidu Momoh also passed away. Dictatorship and misconduct during his tenure in 1985–92 were among the factors that triggered the Civil War. After more than a year of preparation, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission began its work in April. For three months, hundreds of people testified about abuse they have been exposed to or participated in during the war of ten years. The Commission report was to be presented in January 2004.
UN peacekeeping force UNAMSIL will remain for the time being but will gradually be reduced. From 17,000 people, the force should have shrunk to 5,000 in October 2004.