“Muammar Gaddafi’s beating, abuse and ultimate death in the custody of former rebel fighters was an embarrassment to the previous transitional government. Officials in Tripoli said they were determined to handle his son’s case with more order.”
“Gaddafi’s son captured, scared and without fight,” by Marie-Louise Gumuchian for Reuters, November 19:
ZINTAN, Libya (Reuters) – Muammar Gaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam has been captured, scared and with just a few thousand dollars, in the Libyan desert by fighters who vowed to hold him in the mountain town of Zintan until there was a government to hand him over to.
The fighters claimed his capture as gunfire and car horns expressed jubilation across Libya at the seizure of the British-educated 39-year-old who a year ago was set for a dynastic succession to rule the oil-producing desert state.
Saif al-Islam, who vowed to die fighting but was taken without firing a shot, was arrested overnight, officials said, and he was not injured during his seizure — unlike his father, who was killed a month ago on Sunday after being captured in his home town.
“At the beginning he was very scared. He thought we would kill him,” Ahmed Ammar, one of his captors, told Reuters.
Among other things, probably.
Saif al-Islam told Reuters that he was okay and that his hand was bandaged due to wounds sustained in a NATO air strike a month ago. Asked by Reuters on the Soviet-made cargo plane which flew him to the town of Zintan if he was feeling all right, Gaddafi said simply: “Yes.”
The Zintan fighters, who make up one of the powerful militia factions holding ultimate power in a country still without a government, said they planned to keep him in Zintan, until they could hand him over to the authorities.
Prime minister-designate Abdurrahim El-Keib is scheduled to form a government by Tuesday, and the fate of Saif al-Islam will be an early test of its authority. Libyans want to try him at home before, possibly, handing him over to the International Criminal Court which accuses him of crimes against humanity.
The European Union urged Libyan authorities to ensure Saif al-Islam was brought to justice in cooperation with the ICC whose prosecutor is heading for Libya soon to discuss where and how the legal process will take place….