Global Market Data
Tales from the Trail
Lucy P. Marcus
David Cay Johnston
The Great Debate
Macro & Markets
Personal Finance Video
Life & Culture
A selection of our best photos from the last 24 hours. Full Article
Images of December
Best photos of the year
U.S. military moves carriers, denies Iran link
11 Jan 2012
Iran nuclear sites may be beyond reach of "bunker busters"
Yields fall sharply at Spanish, Italian debt sales
Taliban say Marine abuse tape won't hurt Afghanistan talks
Anthony says she became pregnant after passing out at party
11 Jan 2012
Huntsman outraged at ad targeting adopted daughters
Buffett to GOP: You pay and so will I
Gay marriage a threat to humanity’s future-Pope
U.S. Marines probe video of men urinating on Taliban corpses
Wed, Jan 11 2012
TV makers battle at CES
Wed, Jan 11 2012
Bungee jumper plummets into Zimbabwe river
Sun, Jan 8 2012
ICC set to OK Saif trial in Libya, Tripoli says
Libyan children return to Gaddafi-free schools
Sat, Jan 7 2012
Prosecutor seeks death for Egypt's Mubarak
Thu, Jan 5 2012
Militias may drag Libya into civil war: NTC chief
Wed, Jan 4 2012
Battle between Tripoli, Misrata militias kills 4
Tue, Jan 3 2012
Libya names new head of armed forces
Tue, Jan 3 2012
Analysis & Opinion
Leading Copt faces Egypt trial for insulting Islam with Mickey Mouse tweet
New Islamist democracies will be open for business
By Mahmoud Habboush and Ali Shuaib
Thu Jan 12, 2012 11:07am EST
TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Libya expects the International Criminal Court to agree that Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, the most prominent son of Libya's late leader, can be tried in Libya, where he could face the death penalty, the justice minister said on Thursday.
The Hague-based ICC issued an arrest warrant for Saif al-Islam after prosecutors accused him and others of involvement in the killing of protesters during the revolt that eventually toppled Muammar Gaddafi in August.
Minister of Justice Ali Humaida Ashour told Reuters the ICC had accepted in principle a request by Libyan authorities to try Saif al-Islam and would make a final decision within weeks.
"We expect the court (ICC) will accept that Saif is tried in Libya," he told Reuters in an interview in the Libyan capital.
"The Libyan judiciary is the one that has the jurisdiction to try Saif al-Islam Gaddafi because the Libyan judiciary is the base and the ICC complements it."
The ICC's chief prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, said in November that he was happy for Libya to hold the trial, even though he had no guarantee that it would be fair.
But the decision rests with ICC judges who, shortly after Moreno-Ocampo's comments, said that if Libya wished to try Saif al-Islam, it must submit a formal challenge to the ICC and answer questions about his arrest and conditions of detention.
On Tuesday the ICC said it would give Libya until January 23 to provide its answers, including information about his mental and physical health. On Thursday, after Ashour's comments, it said there was no change in its stance.
Ashour said Saif al-Islam would be tried on charges of mismanagement of public funds, homicide and rape, adding that if convicted of homicide, he could face the death penalty.
When asked to comment on an appeal by Human Rights Watch to the Libyan authorities last month to allow Saif al-Islam to have immediate access to a lawyer, he said: "Any defendant has the right to have a lawyer during interrogation."
"International and legal standards will be taken into account and the trial will be held according to Libyan law," he said, adding that Saif would be allowed to hire a lawyer of his choice.
He said the trial, which is expected to be mostly open to the public, would be conducted by an ordinary Libyan court, not a special tribunal.
He added: "A courtroom will be set up for the trial that will accommodate the international organizations and the media."
Asked about the timing, he said the trial would take place after the interrogation was completed and evidence collected.
Saif al-Islam was captured by a powerful militia from Zintan that still holds him in an undisclosed location, but Ashour said that he was under the control of the public prosecutor.
Libya is still largely controlled by dozens of militias that have carved up the country into rival fiefdoms, with many showing little interest in giving up their weapons and joining the military or police, or in taking up civilian jobs.
The chairman of Libya's National Transitional Council, Mustafa Abdel Jalil, said this month his government was facing difficulties reinstating Libya's judiciary system due to a lack of security.
"If there's no security, there will be no law, no development and no elections," he told a gathering on January 3. "People are taking the law into their own hands."
Ashour said the interior minister had assured him that the security forces were able to protect the courts and prisons.
(Writing by Mahmoud Habboush; Editing by Kevin Liffey)
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Be the first to comment on reuters.com.
Add yours using the box above.
Back to top
New York Legal
Support & Contact
Advertise With Us
Connect with Reuters
Our Flagship financial information platform incorporating Reuters Insider
An ultra-low latency infrastructure for electronic trading and data distribution
A connected approach to governance, risk and compliance
Our next generation legal research platform
Our global tax workstation
About Thomson Reuters
Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
NYSE and AMEX quotes delayed by at least 20 minutes. Nasdaq delayed by at least 15 minutes. For a complete list of exchanges and delays, please click here.