ICC prosecutor asks Interpol to help seek Kadhafi's arrest

8th September 2011, Comments 0 comments

War crimes court prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo has asked Interpol to help with the arrest of fugitive former Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi for crimes against humanity, his office said Thursday.

The prosecutor is also requesting so-called red notices for the arrest of one of Kadhafi's sons Seif al-Islam and his intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senussi, it said in a press release issued in The Hague.

"The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, is requesting Interpol to issue a red notice to arrest Moamer Kadhafi for the alleged crimes against humanity of murder and persecution," it said.

A red notice by the international police co-operation agency based in Lyon, seeks the arrest for an extradition or surrender of a person to an international court based on an arrest warrant.

"Arresting Kadhafi is just a matter of time," Moreno-Ocampo said Thursday.

ICC judges on June 27 agreed to Moreno-Ocampo's request for arrest warrants against Kadhafi, 69, Seif al-Islam, 39 and Senussi, 62, for crimes against humanity committed by Libyan troops on their orders, using "lethal force" to quell the uprising against his regime.

Kadhafi, who has been ruling Libya with an iron fist since 1969, "had absolute, ultimate and unquestioned control over the Libyan state apparatus of power, including the security forces," the ICC said in a court document.

His son Seif al-Islam "the most influential person within his inner circle" is his de facto prime minister, the court added.

Senussi as head of military intelligence, "exercised control over the armed forces under his command that were deployed in the city of Benghazi in order to suppress civilian demonstrations," from February 15 to 20 this year, which the prosecutor said has claimed thousands of lives.

Part of his plan to quell the February popular demonstrations by all means involved Libyan soldiers killing civilians as they were leaving mosques and at funerals.

On Thursday the former leader, whose whereabouts are unknown, remained defiant in his first address for several days, telling his countrymen: "They have nothing else to resort to apart from psychological warfare and lies."

Speaking by telephone to Damascus-based Arrai Oruba television, he added: "They last said Kadhafi had been seen in a convoy heading towards Niger."

Since his Tripoli headquarters was overrun on August 23, Kadhafi has made several appeals for resistance in tapes aired by Arrai, which is run by former Iraqi Sunni MP Mishan al-Juburi.

The National Transitional Council fears Kadhafi will try to slip over one of Libya's porous borders, and Niger strongly denied he was in the country after a convoy carrying other senior ousted regime officials fled there on Monday.

The United States said Kadhafi was not believed to be among them.

© 2011 AFP

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