SLUG: 2-306374 Taylor / Nigeria (S-O)
INTRO: Former Liberian President Charles Taylor has arrived in Nigeria, where he was granted asylum after he relinquished the Liberian presidency Monday afternoon. Former President Taylor was met at the airport in the Nigerian capital of Abuja by President Olusegun Obasanjo. Sarah Simpson reports from the V-O-A West Africa Bureau in Abidjan.
TEXT: The Nigerian airliner touched down in Abuja carrying Mr. Taylor and members of his family and security force, along with the Nigerian delegation that had attended his resignation ceremony.
The former president now joins the many millions of Liberians who have been forced to seek refuge outside of their homeland during the 14-year civil war. However, with a personal fortune and a new home to go to, Mr. Taylor has fared better than many of his countrymen.
Mr. Taylor's decision to accept Nigeria's asylum offer and leave his country could result in even more progress toward peace in Liberia, after an eventful week.
Nigerian peacekeeping troops arrived last Monday and should now be allowed into rebel-controlled parts of Monrovia, including the seaport. That would make it possible for aid agencies to begin distributing food, medicine and other vital supplies to tens of thousands of Liberians who are in desperate need. (SIGNED)
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