Saadi Gaddafi: Son of former Libya leader freed from jail

Media reports say Saadi Gaddafi departed on a plane to Istanbul immediately after his release.

Libyan authorities have released Saadi Gaddafi, son of the former leader Muammar Gaddafi who was deposed and killed during a 2011 uprising, according to media reports.

The 47-year-old immediately departed on a plane to Istanbul, an official source told the Reuters news agency on Sunday.

During the 2011 uprising, Saadi Gaddafi fled for Niger but was extradited to Libya in 2014 and has been imprisoned in Tripoli ever since.

The former professional footballer was accused of crimes committed against protesters in 2011 and of killing Libyan football coach Bashir al-Rayani in 2005.

He was acquitted of al-Rayani’s murder in April 2018.

A source at the prosecutor’s office told the AFP news agency that “the chief prosecutor asked, several months ago, for the execution of the decision relating to Saadi Gaddafi as soon as all the required conditions had been satisfied”.

He was free to stay in the country or leave, the source added.

Libya has suffered chaos, division and violence in the 10 years since the uprising. In addition to Muammar Gaddafi, three of his sons were also killed.

A ceasefire in 2020 ended factional fighting and paved the way for peace talks and the formation of a transitional government in March. Elections are planned for December.

An official source told Reuters that Saadi Gaddafi’s release resulted from negotiations that included senior tribal figures and Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh.

Another source told the agency the negotiations also involved former Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha.

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The ‘humanitarian’ left still ignores the lessons of Iraq, Libya and Syria to cheer on more war

By Jonathan Cook

The instinct among parts of the left to cheerlead the right’s war crimes, so long as they are dressed up as liberal “humanitarianism”, is alive and kicking, as Owen Jones revealed in a recent column on the plight of the Uighurs at China’s hands.

The “humanitarian war” instinct persists even after two decades of the horror shows that followed the invasion and occupation of Iraq by the US and UK; the Western-sponsored butchering of Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi that unleashed a new regional trade in slaves and arms; and the West’s covert backing of Islamic jihadists who proceeded to tear Syria apart.

In fact, those weren’t really separate horror shows: they were instalments of one long horror show.

The vacuum left in Iraq by the West – the execution of Saddam Hussein and the destruction of his armed forces – sucked in Islamic extremists from every corner of the Middle East. The US and UK occupations of Iraq served both as fuel to rationalise new, more nihilistic Islamic doctrines that culminated in the emergence of the Islamic State group, and as a training ground for jihadists to develop better methods of militarised resistance.

That process accelerated in post-Gaddafi Libya, where Islamic extremists were handed an even more lawless country than post-invasion Iraq in which to recruit followers and train them, and trade arms. All of that know-how and weaponry ended up flooding into Syria where the same Islamic extremists hoped to establish the seat of their new caliphate.

Many millions of Arabs across the region were either slaughtered or forced to flee their homes, becoming permanent refugees, because of the supposedly “humanitarian” impulse unleashed by George W. Bush and Tony Blair.

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When Israel and Arab nations unite, world should take note, says UN ambassador

 Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Gilad Erdan reflected on 2020 and how “Israel’s future looks brighter than ever” in his address on Sunday night at the Zionist Organization of America’s Virtual Superstar Gala.

Erdan, also Israel’s incoming ambassador to the United States, received the ZOA’s Woo KaiSheng Lifetime Achievement Award for Outstanding Diplomacy. In his acceptance speech, he said that while this past year “supplied a fair amount of hate, it also delivered a fair amount of peace.”

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