05 August 2007

Tragedies, Elections, War Crimes and Football

Sierra Leone has been in the news recently. And not much of it has been good.

Back in June, a helicopter exploded as it landed in Freetown, carrying members of the Togolese soccer team. The helicopter was ferrying passengers from Lungi airport to Freetown itself, a seven-minute ride. Only the copilot survived. Airport ferries have since been done over water. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/6715937.stm. This is the ferry.

And then, speaking of ferrying over water, another 65 people were killed when a boat, leaving Freetown for the north, capsized in the midst of a violent storm, just two days ago. August is the height of Sierra Leone's rainy season; these storms are evidently not so uncommon. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/6929661.stm

Oh boy...

The first of Sierra Leone's war-crimes sentences have been handed out, two three leaders of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council. Alex Tamba Brima, Santigie Borbor Kanu, and Brima Kamara have been jailed for between 45 and 50 years for murder, rape, mutilation, and the recruitment of child soldiers. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/6906702.stm

What's more, the country is preparing for their first elections since the end of the civil war in 2002. The elections were supposed to be held on 28 July; they've been delayed until this coming Saturday.

Not a particularly stable time for this country, no?

Oh, yeah, and the Sierra Leonean football (er,...soccer) team was beaten by the English today. How kind.

1 comment:

proonner paraphrases said...

HEY! that was the ferry we rode from the airport to freetown! scary.. the one next to it is scarier..

and that helicopter that was carrying some teamates and coaches from a soccer team.. it crashed earlier that same day we got there. crazy..