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NPFL Fighters Gang Raped & Killed "Never-Die" Worshippers

Sanniquellie, May 18, 2008 (TRC): Liberia's Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) rural public hearings continued Monday with a weeping witness detailing accounts of how fighters of Charles Taylor's National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) gang raped her and others after they killed scores of worshippers of the "Never-Die-Church" in Karnplay, Gbehlay-Geh District, Nimba County.

Aboitha Keigar said the fighters, she only referred to as "the rebels" invaded their church in 1990 and gang raped her and others.

"This war that took place it suffered me a lot and they raped me. Those that raped me, I don't know them. They raped me until I am not to myself today. I am suffering and my hips are hurting me as I am sitting here. They beat me all over my body and I am having a lot of pains today," the 60 year old woman testified in her Gio vernacular through an English interpreter.

She told the hearing that due to the gang rape she is experiencing pains throughout her body and needs urgent medical attention.

Madame Keigar: "The people that treated me they treated me so bad and I am having body pains today. I don't know them and I don't know where they are coming from. That is what I can remember today."

She named two of the fighters that participated in the gang rape as one Wongan and Lekpailey, adding that they raped several women in the church and killed others because they said they were members of the "Never-Die-Church."

The witness explained that during and after the incident she was unconscious and could not remember all of the fighters except the two who were notorious.

The TRC is an independent body set up to investigate the root causes of the Liberian crisis, document human rights violations, review the history of Liberia, and put all human rights abuses that occurred during the period from 1979 to 2003 on record. The TRC mandate is to also identify victims and perpetrators and make recommendations on amnesty, prosecution and reparation.

The ongoing rural public hearings are being held under the theme: "Confronting Our Difficult Past For A Better Future."

Meanwhile, Public Hearing in Bong County will open today in the provincial capital of Gbarnga.

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