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Movement for Democracy in Liberia (MODEL)

In early 2003 a dissident movement known as the Movement for Democracy in Liberia (MODEL) surfaced in the south-eastern region of Liberia. MODEL was described by one of the LURD leaders, Joe Willie, in an interview on 9 April 2003 with the BBC radio ''as an integrated force...'' of LURD. According to reports by local newspapers, MODEL appears to be the result of the breaking apart of LURD. However, this new group is reported to have gained ground in the south-eastern counties, namely, Grand Gedeh, Sinoe and Grand Kru. Its main target seemed to be the port of Buchanan in Grand Bassa County, from where the Government of Liberia is exporting the country's major produce, timber. On 27 April 2003, fighters belonging to MODEL engaged in a major battle to take the town of Greenville, the main port of south-eastern Liberia, where several logging companies have based their operations. The rebels also attacked government troops on the road between the towns of Tappita and Gborlor-Diallah close to the Ivorian border. At the time of submission of this report, fighting is said to be ongoing around Greenville as government troops attempt to recapture the strategic town. Several logging companies have closed down their operations in Sinoe County as a result of the fighting, while ships were diverted from Greenville port to the port of Monrovia.




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