BEIRUT

Middle East

Libya renews request for Niger to extradite Saadi Gadhafi

NIAMEY: Libya Wednesday reiterated its call for the extradition of slain Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi’s son Saadi from Niger, which has granted him asylum since September 2011 on “humanitarian” grounds.“

The Libyan party has noted the threat posed by the presence in Niger of members of the former Libyan regime,” said a government statement issued after a visit to Niamey by Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan.

Libya “renewed its request for the extradition of those wanted people ... and stressed that their trial in Libya would comply with international law.”

The statement said Libya had insisted that the former regime officials not be extradited to any third country.

“So far, we have not decided anything, consultations should continue, based on the terms of the Libyan request and existing provisions in international law,” Niger’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Bazoum told AFP.

Three of Gadhafi’s sons were killed in the 2011 uprising that brought down Gadhafi’s 42-year rule, including Motassim who was murdered by rebels on the same day as his father.

Several key members of the Gadhafi clan have survived, however, including Gadhafi’s erstwhile heir apparent Seif al-Islam, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court but detained in Libya.

Former Libyan Olympic Committee chief Mohammad and Hannibal, who made headlines with his scandal-packed European holidays, are believed to be in Algeria, as is the fallen tyrant’s daughter Aisha.

Saadi Gadhafi, who found shelter in neighboring Niger when his father’s regime was crumbling, was best known as the head of Libya’s football federation and a player who played his way into Italy’s top flight.

Interpol had issued a “Red Notice” for Saadi Gadhafi for “allegedly misappropriating properties through force and armed intimidation when he headed the Libyan Football Federation.”

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on December 13, 2012, on page 9.

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