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UPDATE 2-Gaddafi Son, Intelligence Chief Want to Surrender to ICC

Wednesday, 26 Oct 2011 11:54 AM

 

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* Gaddafi son said ready to turn himself in

* Intelligence chief also proposing deal with ICC

* Nowhere else for them to go, says Libyan official (Adds background)

By Samia Nakhoul

ABU DHABI, Oct 26 (Reuters) - Muammar Gaddafi's fugitive son Saif al-Islam and former intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senussi are proposing to hand themselves into the International Criminal Court in The Hague, a senior Libyan military official with the National Transitional Council said on Wednesday.

"They are proposing a way to hand themselves over to The Hague," Abdel Majid Mlegta told Reuters from Libya.

Saif al-Islam is wanted by the war crimes court, as was his late father. There is also a warrant out for Senussi.

Saif al-Islam has been on the run since Libyan forces overran his father's home town of Sirte at the weekend. He is thought to be somewhere near Libya's southern border with Niger.

Mlegta said his information came from intelligence sources who told him that Saif al-Islam and Senussi were trying to broker a deal to surrender to the court through a neighbouring country, which he did not name.

They had concluded that it was not safe for them to remain in Libya, or to go to Algeria or Niger, two countries where Gaddafi family members are already sheltering.

"They feel that it is not safe for them to stay where they are or to go anywhere," Mlegta said.

In any case, they said that Niger was asking for too much money for them to stay.

Neither the ICC spokesman or the prosecutor's office was immediately available to comment on the report.

In June the ICC issued arrest warrants for Gaddafi, Saif al-Islam and Senussi on charges of crimes against humanity after the U.N. Security Council referred the Libyan situation to the court in February.

All three were charged with crimes against humanity for the Libyan regime's violent crackdown on protesters in February in what ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo said was part of a "pre-determined" to stamp out the unrest.

It was only the second time that the U.N. Security Council had referred a conflict to the ICC, the world's first permanent war crimes court.

The Security Council previously referred the crisis in Sudan's Darfur region to the ICC in 2005. (Reporting by Samia Nakhoul; Additional reporting by Aaron Gray-Block in The Hague; Writing by Giles Elgood)

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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