Former Libyan chief of intelligence Abdullah al-Senussi will face charges of illegally entering the country of Mauritania, an anonymous source told Reuters on May 21. Al-Senussi, who served under Moammar Qaddafi, was arrested in Mauritania in March. A trial in the country will delay other international efforts to prosecute al Senussi. Libya’s National Transitional Council, the International Criminal Court (ICC) and France have all requested custody of al-Senussi. The ICC issued arrest warrants for al-Senussi in June on charges of murder and persecution for planning attacks on civilians during the Libya conflict, but he is also suspected of organizing mass rapes. France requested custody because al-Senussi was sentenced to life in prison in France for his role in a 1989 plane bombing over Niger that killed 170 people, including 54 French citizens. Both members of Qadaffi’s “inner circle,” al-Senussi and Qadaffi’s son Saif al-Islam, have now been arrested.
In November ICC Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo detailed the charges against al-Senussi and Saif al-Islam to the UN Security Council. Saif al-Islam was arrested in November and is currently in Libyan custody. Earlier in the month, Ocampo said that he has evidence against Saif al-Islam for his role in planning attacks on Libyan civilians. According to Ocampo, Saif al-Islam hired mercenaries to assist him in carrying out his plans to attack civilians that protested the rule of his father.
From Jurist, May 22. Used with permission.