Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Aisha Gadhafi reiterates call for probe into father's death

The daughter of deposed Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi asked international prosecutors to begin investigating her father's and brother's deaths as possible war crimes in a letter submitted Wednesday to the United Nations Security Council.

Aisha Gadhafi, who fled to Algeria in August 2011, asked International Criminal Court Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo last year to open an investigation.

The letter said Moreno-Ocampo had earlier replied to the initial request, "indicating that he would announce his strategy concerning such an investigation on the occasion of his next report to the Security Council in the month of May 2012 and after taking stock of the investigative activities of the Libyan authorities."

"I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that the Rome Statute founding the International Criminal Court obliges the Prosecutor to investigate all aspects of the Libyan situation referred to him by the Security Council," she said in a statement delivered by her attorney, Nick Kaufman.

The ICC initially demanded that Libya hand over Moammar Gadhafi for trial after his capture, but then opened the possibility that he could be tried in Libya. He was killed in October 2011, along with his son Mutassim.

Aisha Gadhafi is a former U.N. goodwill ambassador, as well as a lawyer who assisted in the defense of deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, who was hanged in 2006.

Her father ruled Libya for nearly 42 years, but was killed October 20, 2011, by NATO-backed Libyan forces who had ousted him.

Gadhafi was initially captured alive and unharmed as troops from the National Transitional Council overran his hometown of Sirte, according to Mahmoud Jibril, Libya's then interim prime minister.

But a gunbattle erupted between transitional council fighters and Gadhafi's supporters as his captors attempted to load him into a vehicle, Jibril said, leaving Gadhafi with a wound to his right arm.

More shooting erupted as the vehicle drove away, and Gadhafi was hit in the head, Jibril said. The former leader died moments before arriving at a hospital in Misrata, he added, citing the city's coroner.

Grainy video broadcast on Arabic satellite networks captured some of the onetime Libyan strongman's last moments, as the bloodied but still-alive Gadhafi was being hauled onto a truck.

Another video showed a dead Gadhafi with what appeared to be a head wound.

Ali Aujali, Libya's ambassador to the United States, said the National Transitional Council and the Libyan people wanted Gadhafi to be taken alive to answer for his crimes.

In one video from the scene, a voice can be heard shouting, "No, no, we want him alive, we want him alive."


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