News / Africa

Analysts: Warrant for Gadhafi Could Complicate His Possible Departure

Muammar Gaddafi speaks at a Tripoli hotel in this still image from Libyan TV, released May 11, 2011
Muammar Gaddafi speaks at a Tripoli hotel in this still image from Libyan TV, released May 11, 2011

Multimedia

With the International Criminal Court's arrest warrants for Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, his son and a trusted ally, some analysts say avenues could close for Mr. Gadhafi, should he want to leave Libya in defeat and find a safe haven.


The streets of rebel-held Misrata erupted in jubilation when news came Monday that the International Criminal Court had issued an arrest warrant for embattled Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

Tuesday, the ICC’s top prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, called on Mr. Gadhafi’s top aides to hand him over.

“Today, it is time for arrest," Moreno-Ocampo said.

But those close to the Libyan leader reject the court’s authority. “This court is nothing but a cover for the military operations of NATO, NATO which tried and declared it would assassinate the brother leader and his family. These actions from NATO are crimes against humanity,” said Mohammed al-Gamudi, Libya's justice minister.

He went on to say that Libya might look for ways to prosecute NATO for crimes against humanity. For more than 100 days, NATO air strikes have targeted Libyan government targets.  

Libya is not a signatory to the International Criminal Court, but nations that could offer Mr. Gadhafi safe haven are.  And that complicates matters, says Brett Schaefer, a legal analyst for the Heritage Foundation in Washington.

“What we do know is that numerous governments had approached Gadhafi about an exile and there were significant rumors that he was entertaining these options until the referral itself,” Schaefer said.

The referral came from the United Nations Security Council.  That body requested that the ICC launch an investigation into Mr. Gadhafi and his aides.  But once that referral is made, the court can act independently.  In short, there’s no going back.

International pressure can be intense on countries that accept exiled leaders with arrest warrants outstanding.

Former Liberian President Charles Taylor fled to Nigeria when the Special Court for Sierre Leone, also at The Hague, issued a warrant for his arrest on war crimes charges.  And the Nigerians eventually turned him over. Mr. Gadhafi has said this example meant leaders weren’t likely to accept exile deals in the future.

Schaefer says he would like to see Libyans deal justice for Mr. Gadhafi. “In an ideal world what you would have is the rebel forces be victorious, arrest Gadhafi and his associates and then hold them accountable domestically,” Schaefer said.

Mr. Gadhafi has said many times publicly that he will stay and fight to the death in his homeland.  With an arrest warrant now marking him a wanted man, he may not have a choice.

You May Like

Video Indiana Controversy Points to Divergent Notions of Religious Freedom

Gay-marriage opponents are looking for ways to maintain their beliefs in face of changing culture, one writer says More

UNICEF Denies North Korean Measles Outbreak

Agency dismisses Russian media report after government, WHO assurances More

Turkey Seen Taking Harder Stance Against Militant Kurds

Stance comes as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is being seen as moving closer to generals More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedomi
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 01, 2015 1:41 AM
Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedom

Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Nigerians Welcome Buhari's Return to Power

Crowds of jubilant Nigerians nationwide have celebrated the return to power of former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari. The retired army general won this year's presidential election with more than 2 million votes more than incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan. Buhari's supporters hope he can strengthen the country's economy and security once he takes office in late May. Zlatica Hoke has this story.
Video

Video Report: State of Black America a 'Tale of Two Nations'

The National Urban League has described this year's "State of Black America" report as a "tale of two nations." The group's annual report, released earlier this month (March), found that under an equality index African Americans had only 72% parity compared to whites in areas such as education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement. It’s a gap that educators and students at Brooklyn’s Medgar Evers College are looking to close. VOA's Daniela Schrier reports from the school.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Gamma Ray Observatory to Open Soon in Mexico

American and Mexican scientists have completed construction of the world's largest gamma ray observatory, situated high in central Mexico’s Sierra Negra Mountain. The observatory's huge array of water-based detectors will soon start discovering secrets about black holes and supernovas. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials Underway in West Africa

Ebola has claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people in West Africa. Since last summer, researchers have rushed to get anti-Ebola vaccines into clinical trials. While it's too early to say that any of the potential vaccines work, some scientists say they are seeing strong results from some of the studies. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Islamic State Prisoners Talk of Curiosity, God, Regret

Islamic State fighter, a prisoner of Kurdish YPG forces, asked his family asking for forgiveness: "I destroyed myself and I destroyed them along with me." The Syrian youth was one of two detainees who spoke to VOA’s Kurdish Service about the path they chose; their names have been changed and identifying details obscured. VOA's Zana Omer reports.
Video

Video Germanwings Findings Raise Issue of Psychological Testing for Pilots

More is being discovered about the co-pilot in the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 in the French Alps. Investigators say he was hiding a medical condition, raising questions about the mental qualifications of pilots. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.

VOA Blogs

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More