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Africa

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi may aim to flee Libya, says ICC

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Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-11-02

The International Criminal Court's chief prosecutor said on Wednesday he continues to receive information Moamar Gaddafi's son Saif al-Islam might try to flee from Libya with the help of mercenaries.

REUTERS  - The International Criminal Court continues to receive information that Muammar Gaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam might try to flee Libya with the help of mercenaries, the court’s chief prosecutor said on Wednesday.

Luis Moreno-Ocampo also said he was investigating whether the former Libyan leader, who died shortly after his capture by government forces last month, and his former spy chief ordered mass rapes.

“There are allegations of crimes committed by NATO forces, allegations of crimes committed by NTC-related forces ... as well as allegations of additional crimes committed by pro-Gaddafi forces,” Ocampo said in a speech to the U.N. Security Council.

“These allegations will be examined impartially and independently by the (prosecution),” he said.

NATO has denied allegations of deliberately targeting civilians during its seven-month campaign of air strikes against Gaddafi’s forces, which the alliance ended on Monday. Libya’s National Transitional Council has vowed to investigate alleged executions and abuse of suspected Gaddafi supporters.

Human rights groups have said that NTC forces singled out sub-Saharan African migrant workers for arbitrary arrest and detention due to assumptions that they supported Gaddafi. Ocampo said he was aware of those allegations.

The National Transitional Council, Libya’s interim leadership, has said it would like to try Saif al-Islam and former intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senussi in Libya. Both men have been indicted by the ICC for crimes against humanity and other war crimes.

“We are also receiving information that a group of mercenaries may be endeavoring to facilitate his (Saif al-Islam’s) escape from Libya,” Ocampo said. “We are calling upon states to do all they can to disrupt any such operation.”

Saif al-Islam may be heading for Niger, which risks upsetting its own pro-Gaddafi Tuareg nomads if it hands him over to the ICC in line with its treaty obligations, as it has promised to do if the wanted man shows up on its territory.

Date created : 2011-11-02

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