THE chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court says there are C[pounds sterling]serious suspicionsC[yen] that the death of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was a war crime.
Luis Moreno Ocampo told reporters after briefing the UN Security Council that he sent a letter to the head of the National Transitional Council asking what the government's plans were to investigate alleged war crimes by all parties, including the rebels.
The uprising against Gaddafi's 42-year rule erupted in February, quickly escalated into civil war, and ended in October with Gaddafi's capture and death in unclear circumstances.
Witness accounts and video of the deposed dictator after his capture show he was beaten and abused by his captors, and there were strong indications he was killed in custody.
C[pounds sterling]The death of Muammar Gaddafi is one of the issues to be clarified, what happened, because there are serious suspicions that it was a war crime,C[yen] Moreno Ocampo said.
He said what the ICC did on Gaddafi's death and other war crimes will depend on what Libya's interim government did because under the Rome statute that established the war crimes tribunal, the ICC only stepped in if national authorities were unwilling or unable to act.
Moreno Ocampo said his office was working closely with Libyan authorities not only on Gaddafi's case but on those of his son, Saif al-Islam, and former intelligence chief, Abdullah al-Senoussi, who were captured and face ICC charges.
Libya's new leaders have said they will try Saif al-Islam at home even though they have yet to set up a strong court system. …