European Union hopes Taylor capture will lead to justice, reconciliation in Africa

The European Union said Thursday it hoped the arrest and capture of former Liberia president Charles Taylor would lead to reconciliation, lasting peace and justice against "those who committed heinous war crimes."

EU Development Commissioner Louis Michel welcomed the capture of Taylor on Tuesday, for crimes against humanity over his alleged support of rebels in Sierra Leone .

"This is a very welcome event that will contribute to turning the page on one of the darkest episodes of Africa 's recent history," Michel said in a statement. "There cannot be reconciliation and long-lasting peace if there is impunity and immunity for those who committed heinous war crimes."

Michel praised Nigeria and U.N. peacekeepers in Liberia for their "prompt and successful action" in bringing in Taylor .

He said the arrest showed that putting rule of law and peace as top priorities will lead to stability in the region.

Taylor is charged on 11 counts for backing Sierra Leone 's rebels during a brutal war from 1991-2002.

He was captured in northeastern Nigeria Tuesday as he was trying to cross the border into neighboring Cameroon . He was flown from Nigeria to Liberia and then on to Sierra Leone where he was jailed in a court detention facility in Freetown , reports the AP.


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