On December 7 the International Criminal Court Pre-Trial Chamber I comprised of Silvia Fernandez de Gurmendi, Presiding Judge, Hans-Peter Kaul and Christine Van den Wyngaert (Judges), requested that the Libyan representatives “provide concrete, tangible and pertinent evidence that proper investigations are currently ongoing.” Libya has until January 23, 2013 to honor this request.
They also asked the representatives to indicate where Saif Gaddafi was presently detained, whether appropriate steps were being taken to arrange for his transfer to Tripoli and whether suitable prison and trial facilities were available. They agreed that Libya’s request to have the OPCD removed as Saif Qadhafi’s legal counsel had merit.
Both the Prosecutor and the OPCD were ordered to submit their response to Libya’s submissions by February 11, 2013. Link
On December 11, the OPCD submitted a request for leave to appeal, asking the Chamber to reconsider their decision because it called into question the court’s impartiality. Saif Qadhafi had expressed his desire to have the OPCD represent him. To remove them now would deny him his right to legal counsel of his choice. It would also offer Libya the opportunity to re-litigate, expelling all the evidence they had submitted during the admissibility hearing.
“The OPCD asserts that “whilst the disposition section of the decision appears to reject the request of the Libyan Government, it is clear […] that the Chamber granted it in substance, insofar as the Chamber has indicated its intention to revoke the appointment of the OPCD in the admissibility proceedings…the Pre-Trial Chamber has also called into question the status of the submissions of the Defence on behalf of Mr Gaddafi thus far…[b]y revoking the mandate of the OPCD to represent Mr Gaddafi in the admissibility proceedings… the Chamber is effectively penalising the Defence for complying with their duty to vigorously defend the interests of their client in a fully independent manner… [t]o the extent that the Decision could be interpreted to undermine the propriety of all submissions tendered thus far by Mr. Gaddafi’s Defence, it also undermines Mr. Gaddafi’s right to effective representation in these proceedings…the OPCD avers that “the Chamber’s failure to take into consideration the fact that the defendant verbally requested the continued appointment of the OPCD at this juncture of the proceedings constitutes a complete denial of the defendant’s right to be represented by counsel of his choice, as enshrined in article 67(l)(d) of the Statute.” Link
Although the Chamber accuses the OPCD of speculation, the facts are that the ICC have done nothing to alleviate the suffering of prisoners under their jurisdiction and have shirked their responsibility to have Saif Al Islam Qadhafi and Abdullah Al Sennusi transferred to The Hague where they would receive necessary medical attention, have access to family and friends and unrestricted communication with their defense counsel.
The Chamber is aware that the prisoners have been subjected to torture and inhumane treatment. They were informed that Abdullah Al Senussi suffers from a liver disease that will be fatal if untreated. They also know that he has been denied urgent medical attention.
Al Unood Al Senussi wanted to visit her father because she was concerned about the alarming deterioration of his health. She was arrested and detained upon her arrival in Tripoli. Her case clearly demonstrates that the Libyan authorities continue their program of brutal persecution and ideological cleansing, detaining family members of political prisoners who seek information about their loved ones or attempt to obtain legal representation for them.
Witnesses who could testify on behalf of both prisoners can be present in court at The Hague whereas in Libya they risk arrest or assassination.
Neither prisoner would face the death penalty at The Hague and the world would have the opportunity to hear their testimony.
The ICC are obligated to ensure that no irreparable harm comes to Saif Al Islam Qadhafi and Abdullah Al Senussi. The ICC are fully aware that both men would be executed in Libya.
The ICC must honor its obligation to protect prisoners under their jurisdiction and hold the trials for Saif Al Islam Qadhafi and Abdullah Al Senussi at The Hague.
Should they fail in this they will most certainly be accomplices to murder.
The OPCD would be derelict in their duty if they did not challenge the court’s criminality and complicity.
Melinda Taylor Accuses ICC Of Treachery In Behind The Scenes Deal Over Saif Al Islam Qadhafi
Urgent Action: Viva Libya Saif Al Islam Gaddafi File And Final Appeal
Transcript From Saif Al Islam Qadhafi’s ICC Admissibility Hearing [ii Documents]
UN Urges Libya To Cooperate With ICC In The Case Of Abdullah Al-Senussi
Addendum To Request To Submit Observations Re: Abdullah Al Senussi & Saif Al Islam Gaddafi
All ICC Documents Pertaining To Abdullah Al Senussi And Saif Al Islam Gaddafi
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