Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point
On Air
Low Graphics

Wednesday, June 3, 1998 Published at 09:33 GMT 10:33 UK

World: Africa

Rebels rampage in Sierra Leone

Some victims had to walk for days to reach hospital

More than 240,000 refugees have fled attacks by rebels in the east and north of Sierra Leone over the past few weeks.

BBC Freetown correspondent: "Rebels let loose on civilians"
The United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR, says it is racing against time to save civilians fleeing to camps in Guinea and Liberia.

A senior UNHCR official, Soren Jessen-Petersen, said the refugees had suffered what he called barbaric and unequalled atrocities at the hands of the rebels loyal to the former military regime.

Some of the victims said armed groups had carried out executions, mutilations, rapes and kidnappings. Medecins sans Frontiers said thousands of civilians have been attacked over the last six weeks. It said some of the atrocities included burning children alive.

The former military regime in Sierra Leone was ousted four months ago, but forces loyal to it are still fighting troops of the West African intervention force.

The BBC Correspondent in Freetown, Lansana Fosana, says very little can be done by the international community to put pressure on the rebels because they have no centralised control.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia

Relevant Stories

31 May 98 | Africa
Amnesty for rebel fighters

14 May 98 | Africa
Sierra Leone rebels take revenge

11 May 98 | Arms to Africa row
Sierra Leone - a turbulent history

Internet Links

Sierra Leone Web


Medecins sans Frontiers

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

In this section

Dam builders charged in bribery scandal

Burundi camps 'too dire' to help

Sudan power struggle denied

Animal airlift planned for Congo

Spy allegations bug South Africa

Senate leader's dismissal 'a good omen'

Tatchell calls for rights probe into Mugabe

Zimbabwe constitution: Just a bit of paper?

South African gays take centre stage

Nigeria's ruling party's convention

UN to return to Burundi

Bissau military hold fire

Nile basin agreement on water cooperation

Congo Brazzaville defends peace initiative

African Media Watch

Liberia names new army chief