Gaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam sentenced to death by Libyan court. A Libyan court sentenced the son of dictator Muammar Gaddafi Saif al-Islam killed and eight others to death for crimes during the 2011 uprising. Former intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senussi and Gaddafi last prime minister Baghdadi al-Mahmudi also among those sentenced to death. The ruling Al-Islam was rendered in absentia as he is detained in the southwestern city of Zintan by a militia opposed to the authorities in Tripoli. The 37 defendants were charged with crimes including murder and complicity in inciting rape during the 2011 uprising that overthrew the dictatorship. abc
Other charges brought before the court of Tripoli also included kidnapping, looting, sabotage and embezzlement of public funds. The Human Rights Office of the United Nations said it was “deeply concerned” by the verdicts and sentences. The trial, which opened in the Libyan capital, in April last year, has been dogged by criticism from human rights groups, as well as an unresolved dispute with the International Criminal Court in The Hague on jurisdiction in the case Al-Islam. The militia holding Al-Islam is loyal to the internationally recognized government, which fled this remote last August when an alliance of rival militias seized the capital and established his own administration.
Only appearances of Al-Islam have been in court by video and has been none since May last year. Most defendants are held in the capital, but some remain in Libya’s third city Misrata, which is loyal to the authorities in Tripoli. The Security Council of the United Nations referred to the conflict in Libya to the ICC in February 2011 amid Gaddafi repression of the popular uprising against his regime decades at the height of the Arab Spring. Al-Islam is wanted by the court based in The Hague, accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity. ICC Prosecutors say that as part of the “inner circle” of his father, who “conceived and orchestrated a plan to deter and quell, by all means, the civilian
demonstrations against the Gaddafi regime.” Human rights groups have expressed concern about the trial, criticizing the fact that the defendants have had limited access to lawyers and access key documents.