London: Syrian President Bashar-al Assad’s regime brought about Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi’s death by providing France with the key intelligence which led to the operation that killed him, it has been claimed.
Sources in Libya claimed that French spies operating in Sirte, Gaddafi''s last refuge, were able to set a trap for him after obtaining his satellite telephone number from the Syrian government.
The Telegraph quoted Rami El Obeidi, a former senior intelligence official in Tripoli, as saying that Assad ‘sold out his fellow tyrant in an act of self-preservation’.
Obeidi said Assad offered Paris the telephone number in exchange for an easing of French pressure on Damascus.
“In exchange for this information, Assad had obtained a promise of a grace period from the French and less political pressure on the regime – which is what happened,” the paper quoted him, as saying.
Obeidi’s remarks came after Mahmoud Jibril, who served as Libyan prime minister in the transitional government, confirmed that a foreign ‘agent’ was involved in the operation that killed Gaddafi.
He did not identify his nationality, but the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera quoted Western diplomats in Tripoli as saying that if a foreign agent was involved ‘he was almost certainly French’.
First Published: Monday, October 01, 2012, 11:57