Gaddafi's son must be tried for crimes against humanity: ICC

The International Criminal Court's prosecutor strongly urged Libya on Thursday to hand over the son of slain dictator Moammar Gadhafi for trial on charges of crimes against humanity, despite Libyan government objections.

hidden November 15, 2013 08:02:04 IST
Gaddafi's son must be tried for crimes against humanity: ICC

United Nations: The International Criminal Court's prosecutor strongly urged Libya on Thursday to hand over the son of slain dictator Moammar Gadhafi for trial on charges of crimes against humanity, despite Libyan government objections.

Fatou Bensouda also called on the U.N. Security Council to urge the Libyan government to comply with an ICC order to send Seif al-Islam Gadhafi to The Hague, Netherlands for trial.

Gaddafis son must be tried for crimes against humanity ICC

Muamar Gaddafi. Reuters image

Libya insists that Seif al-Islam, his father's one-time heir apparent, should be tried by its national courts. But judges at the ICC cast doubt on the country's ability to give him a fair trial, and his defense lawyer has said he could be executed in Libya if he isn't handed over to the ICC.

Libya's U.N. Ambassador Ibrahim Dabbashi told the Security Council his government is cooperating with the ICC but warned that handing over Seif al-Islam would exacerbate tensions in the country.

"I think no Libyan government can submit Seif to the ICC" because of his very important role in his father's regime, Dabbashi said.

He stressed that the Libyan people, especially the victims, want justice for the crime committed during Gadhafi's dictatorship.

Seif al-Islam, who is being held by a militia in Zintan, is charged with murder and persecution of civilians during the early days of the popular 2011 rebellion that eventually toppled his father. If convicted, he would face a maximum sentence of life imprisonment at the Hague court, which does not impose the death penalty.

Bensouda insisted that governments are required to surrender anyone subject to an ICC arrest warrant, saying, "Political considerations have no place in law."

She noted that the Libyan government is offering to submit more information about prosecuting Seif al-Islam in Libya, "and the court is also considering this request."

Dabbashi said Libya is going to give submit additional information to the ICC.

But Russia's deputy U.N. ambassador Evgeny Zagaynov expressed "serious doubts" that Libyan authorities can conduct national investigations of alleged war crimes.

He pointed to Bensouda's report to the Security Council, which stated that an estimated 8,000 conflict-related detainees are being held without due process and 27 have died in custody, "where significant information suggests torture as the cause of death," since late 2011.

"Unfortunately, armed clashes, violence and lawlessness in Libya according to various sources continue to this day," Zagaynov said. "The central authorities are clearly unable to exert control over the whole country."

Zagaynov asked Bensouda why the ICC judges ordered that Seif al-Islam be handed over but last month ruled that Libya is "able" to prosecute former intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senoussi for crimes against humanity related to his alleged involvement in the deadly crackdown on opponents of Gadhafi. Al-Senoussi, who is detained by the government in Tripoli, has appealed the decision to be tried at home and not by the ICC.

Bensouda said the cases are "factually different" and the information submitted by the government was different.

AP

Updated Date:

also read

On this day in 2010: England beat Australia in World T20 final to lift maiden ICC title
First Cricket News

On this day in 2010: England beat Australia in World T20 final to lift maiden ICC title

England ended their long wait for a major ICC trophy on this day in 2010 by beating Australia in the World T20 final.

South Africa batter Zubayr Hamza suspended by ICC for doping violation
First Cricket News

South Africa batter Zubayr Hamza suspended by ICC for doping violation

The ICC on Tuesday suspended Hamza from all cricket-related activities for a period of nine months after he admitted to an anti-doping rule violation under the apex body's anti-doping code.

Alyssa Healy, Keshav Maharaj win ICC Player of the Month award for April
First Cricket News

Alyssa Healy, Keshav Maharaj win ICC Player of the Month award for April

Alyssa Healy was part of Australia's ODI World Cup-winning squad while Keshav Maharaj took 16 wickets in two Tests against Bangladesh.