A woman has been arrested by a police war crimes team on suspicion of torture. The 51-year-old was held in custody over allegations relating to atrocities during the Liberian civil war which stretched from 1989 to 1993.
Metropolitan police arrested the woman at an address in east London just after 7am on Thursday. Police said searches were being carried out at two addresses in east and central London.
A spokesman added: “We continue to liaise with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Crown Prosecution Service regarding this investigation.”
The Liberian civil war began in 1989 when the former government ministerCharles Taylor started an uprising to topple the government. Backed by the National Patriotic Front of Liberia, he gained control of large areas of the country and rose to become one of Africa’s most prominent warlords.
The front was accused of a wide range of human rights abuses, and the large numbers of deaths during the conflict eventually led to the involvement of the UN and Economic Community of West African States.
A final peace agreement led to the election of Taylor as president of Liberia in 1997.
A second civil war broke out in 1999 and Taylor was forced into exile in 2003.
He was later jailed for committing war crimes in neighbouring Sierra Leone.