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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 March 2006, 19:39 GMT
Taylor off agenda at Abuja talks
Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and Olusegun Obasanjo in Abuja
Johnson-Sirleaf and Obasanjo focused on economic matters
President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf of Liberia has met Nigerian counterpart Olusegun Obasanjo in Abuja, during her first visit there since her election.

A Nigerian spokeswoman said the two had discussed investments, but not the fate of ex-Liberian leader Charles Taylor.

Mr Taylor, who is living in exile in Nigeria, is wanted for war crimes by an international tribunal in Sierra Leone.

Nigeria has said it is willing to surrender him, but only if an elected Liberian government requests it.

This position was reiterated by Mr Obasanjo's spokeswoman after Saturday's talks.

"The prerogative of the return of former President Taylor remains that of the Liberian people and government," Remi Oyo told reporters.

No rush

President Johnson-Sirleaf said last month that prosecuting Mr Taylor was "secondary" to her agenda.

Charles Taylor
Taylor is living comfortably in southern Nigeria
Mr Taylor, who has been in Nigeria since leaving power in 2003, is accused of backing the notorious RUF rebels in Sierra Leone's 1990s civil war.

Mr Taylor stood down as rebels threatened to seize the Liberia capital, Monrovia.

His departure into exile was part of a deal backed by African and Western powers.

The terms of the move have never been publicly spelled out.

But the BBC's Elizabeth Blunt in Abuja says they are believed to have included a comfortable home in Nigeria and a pledge that he would not be handed over for prosecution - a promise that so far has been honoured.




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