Italy wants Gaddafi and sons on trial in Hague



Italy wants Gaddafi and sons on trial in Hague Rome: Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said on Tuesday that Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and his sons would be captured soon and should be judged by the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.

"They will be captured without a doubt, and soon. In my opinion they should certainly be put on trial in the Hague," Frattini said in an interview with Radioanchio radio.

"I hope that the National Transitional Council in Bengasi will hand them over to the Hague tribunal" to be tried for war crimes, he said, adding that they could also be "put on trial for other charges in Libyan courts."

Two of Gaddafi's sons, believed to have been captured by the rebels yesterday, were today said to be still at large and the Libyan leader's whereabouts remained unknown.

Seif al-Islam, after being said by the International Criminal Court (ICC) to be under arrest, appeared before cheering armed loyalists outside the family's residential compound in the early hours of today.

Mohammed Gaddafi, the leader's eldest son whose arrest had also been announced by rebels, has escaped, the Libyan ambassador to Washington told CNN.

Frattini refused to be drawn on who Italy would like to see lead a post-Gaddafi Libya, but praised Abdelsalam Jalloud, Gaddafi's former right-hand man, as having "excellent attributes."

The former Prime Minister, who fled to Italy after defecting at the weekend, "played a balanced role in Libya, and did not dirty himself with the crimes" carried out by the regime, he said.

Frattini said the NTC leaders Moustapha Abdeljalil and Mahmoud Jibril "have shown themselves to have wisdom and equanimity, even in delicate moments" but warned against confusing "what the West likes with what Libyans like."

The Libyan ambassador in Italy, Hafez Gaddour, told Radioanchio that "Gaddafi will flee or will be arrested alive but it's unlikely he'll give himself up."

"We want him to be arrested to be put on trial for the crimes he has committed," said the diplomat, who joined the rebels several months ago.

Gaddour said Italy and Libya "will continue to have special relations."

As Libya's former colonial ruler Italy enjoyed strong economic ties with Gaddafi and was the country's top trade partner before the start of the conflict in mid-February.

PTI