Timeline of Liberia’s Key Political Milestones

Posted November 10th, 2011 at 6:40 pm (UTC-5)
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Here is a look at the critical political events and milestones leading up to Liberia's presidential runoff election Tuesday November 8:

1822 – First settlement of freed slaves from the United States established in what is now Liberia.

1847 – Liberia becomes independent republic.

1944 – William Tubman becomes president. He stays in that post until his death in 1971, promoting foreign investment and trying to bridge the divide between descendants of the former U.S. slaves and native Liberians.

1980 – Samuel Doe leads military coup, ushering in decade of authoritarian rule.

December 1989 – Charles Taylor launches a rebellion that leads to civil war

September 1990 – Doe captured and executed.

1997 – Charles Taylor elected president.

August 2003 – Peace deal ends the civil war. Taylor resigns and is charged with war crimes by The Hague for his role in Sierra Leone's civil war. A transitional government takes over.

November 2005 – Economist Ellen Johnson Sirleaf elected president, becoming the first elected female head of state.

April 2007 – The United Nations lifts an embargo on Liberian diamonds that had been in place to prevent proceeds from funding the civil war in Sierra Leone.

February 2009 – President Sirleaf apologizes before the country's Truth and Reconciliation Commission for supporting Taylor. She says was “fooled” by him and initially believed his rebellion was necessary and that she gave him money.

October 2011 – President Sirleaf wins Nobel Peace Prize for her struggle to promote women's rights. Fellow presidential candidate Winston Tubman tells the French news agency Mrs. Sirleaf is undeserving of the prize because she “committed violence.” Tubman also says giving her the award days before the country's election is unacceptable.

November 10, 2011 – President Sirleaf wins second term in presidential runoff boycotted by opposition candidate Tubman, who alleged fraud.