14 June 2017- MH Group Statement on Saif al-Islam Gaddafi
On 7 July 2016, reports were disseminated by a UK-based lawyer claiming to represent Saif al-Islam Gaddafi that Mr Gaddafi had been “released from custody, from Zintan detention” and that the death sentence had been “quashed” by the Libyan central government. These reports were and remain unsubstantiated and no power of attorney was ever presented despite numerous requests.
Now, almost one year later, exactly the same, unsubstantiated, unverified, and unreliable news release has made its rounds once again. There has been no documentary evidence of Mr Gaddafi’s freedom, no proof of power of attorney, and not a single syllable of statement from Mr Gaddafi confirming or denying his supposed lawyer’s claim.
After several years of my advocacy through submissions to the ICC and African Commission and Court of Human Rights, the African Court on 3 June 2016 issued a Default Judgment against the Libyan government calling the unlawful detention of Mr Gaddafi a violation of his rights to liberty and a fair trial. It is no surprise that the Libyan government would want to escape further embarrassment and potential prosecution by the African Court by claiming, along with Mr Gaddafi’s apparently appointed lawyer, that he is no longer under unlawful detention nor facing the death penalty.
There has been no evidence to the contrary, and neither should these reports be taken at their word until such word exists from Mr Gaddafi himself.