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Seif Al Islam’s Lawyers Criticise His Trial by Libya

Posted by Mariana on 23 Jan 2013 | Comments

Lawyers defending Seif al-Islam, the son of the former Libyan dictator at the International Criminal Court, ICC, have accused the Libyan authorities of conducting a “Kafka-esque show trial” after he appeared in a court in his homeland for the first time last week.

After Seif appeared in court, ICC lawyers submitted an urgent request to the ICC “to issue an immediate decision on the admissibility of the case, and to order the government of Libya to immediately surrender Gaddafi to the custody of the ICC”.

The ICC is mulling a Libyan request to put Gaddafi and former spy chief Abdullah Senussi on trial there, while the ICC itself wants to try Seif on charges of crimes against humanity committed in the conflict that overthrew his father in 2011.

The ICC lawyers said that Gaddafi “is essentially being tried for attempting to communicate with the ICC via his Counsel in relation to the fact that his rights had been violated”.

They added that prosecuting a defendant for trying to defend himself “epitomises the very definition of a Kafka-esque show trial.”

The ICC lawyers said Gaddafi’s trial on security charges was “a completely unrelated, and abusive prosecution,” and that “such strong-arm tactics have absolutely no place in a court of law, or in any country, which claims to respect the rule of law.”

The ICC, which was mandated by the UN Security Council to investigate the Libyan conflict, issued arrest warrants in June 2011 for both Seif and Senussi on charges of crimes against humanity.

Lawyers for the two accused have said they will not get a fair trial in Libya, which has until Wednesday to submit its latest report to the ICC in a bid to have the court quash a surrender request.

Source: The Tripoli Post

Photo: IB Times
Photo: IB Times