On June 4, 2003, as Liberian President Charles Taylor walked up the steps for the opening ceremony of the Accra Peace Accords in Ghana, I stood in front of the world's press and announced that I had unsealed an indictment charging him with 17 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity. The international community reacted with praise - and condemnation.
Politicians and diplomats voiced concern that my announcement had jeopardized the newly organized peace process and hopes for stability in West Africa. Some even said that the indictment put lives at risk. Yet five years later, Liberia is stable, and a fairly elected government is in place with a real possibility that it is on the correct path to a sustainable peace under the leadership of the first woman ever elected a head of state in Africa. Mr. Taylor sits in The Hague on trial before a judicial chamber of the Special Court of Sierra Leone.
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