Seif Islam Kadafi reportedly seeking to surrender; U.N. lifts 'no-fly' zone
Seif Islam Kadafi, the prominent son of the late Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi, reportedly wants to surrender and turn himself over to the International Criminal Court, Reuters reported Thursday, citing a source with Libya’s Transitional National Council.
According to the source, Kadafi, 39, has requested an aircraft to take him out of the southern Libyan desert to the Hague-based court. Abdullah Sanoussi, the Libyan regime's former security chief, also was offering to give himself up, the source told the news agency.
Accounts of the alleged surrender proposal could not be independently verified. They came as the United Nations Security Council unanimously voted Thursday to lift the "no-fly" zone over Libya as of next Monday and end its authorization of military action to protect civilians there, according to the Associated Press.
Both Kadafi and Sanoussi are subject to arrest warrants from the war crimes court, where they face charges of murder and other crimes against humanity allegedly committed during the regime's crackdown on protesters this year.
The whereabouts of the men remains unclear. Some media reports indicated that the younger Kadafi had been trying to escape to neighboring Niger, where Sanoussi reportedly had already fled. Other accounts put Kadafi in the Libyan desert, close to Niger and Algeria, being sheltered by nomads.
The Libyan government source told Reuters that Kadafi wanted a third country to be involved in a deal to get him to The Hague and that he was requesting certain “assurances.” His whereabouts and intentions had been monitored via satellite phone calls information from intelligence cables, the source said.
The new Libyan authorities relied heavily on NATO’s assistance during the fight to oust Kadafi. The Security Council authorized actions that included a bombing campaign in March. But now that liberation has been declared in Libya, officials of the international military alliance have made clear their intent to reduce their commitment.
-- Ann M. Simmons in Los Angeles
Photo: Seif Islam Kadafi, son of deceased Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi, addresses a group of supporters in Tripoli in March. Credit: Rick Loomis / Los Angeles Times