News / Africa

Gadhafi Will Tell No Tale in Court

Anti-Gadhafi fighters return fire during clashes with pro-Gadhafi forces in the center of Sirte October 17, 2011.
Anti-Gadhafi fighters return fire during clashes with pro-Gadhafi forces in the center of Sirte October 17, 2011.
Joe DeCapua

While the death of Moammar Gadhafi has caused massive celebrations in Libya, it may also have a downside. It could mean the Libyan people will not have the chance to go through the full peace and reconciliation process by putting him on trial.

Justice done?

Professor David Crane of Syracuse University is the former chief prosecutor for the Special Court for Sierra Leone and the man who signed the arrest warrant for former Liberian leader Charles Taylor.

“There is a bit lost. Yes, justice seems to have been done, but in reality we tend to focus on the dictator,” he said. “We should be focusing on his victims – 42 years of oppression. And the victims want the truth to be told about their families, about what took place in Libya.”

Crane said when a “dictator” is killed, it holds the “potential of the truth not coming out.”

Rule of law

Trials are still possible for Gadhafi’s son, Saif, and the country’s former intelligence chief, who are still at large.

Crane said, “We have two competing equities here. We have the people of Libya and their new government wanting to prosecute Moammar Gadhafi and his son and the intelligence chief and others under Libyan domestic law, whereas we also have now the International Criminal Court very much involved. And they’re certainly going to want to be involved or at least certainly prosecute as well.”

Crane prefers that the Libyan people hold trials in their own courts.

“In the long term, the key to their success will be rule of law,” he said.

But does Libya currently have a functioning judicial system to accommodate such proceedings?

“That’s another good question because again we want to make sure that justice is done, but the justice has to be fair and open. The standard would be a willingness and an ability. If they are unable or unwilling to do this according to international standards, then the International Criminal Court could step in…. But if the Libyans have standing courts, they’re open and ready to function, then it’s going to take a pretty big showing that they’re unable or unwilling,” Crane said.

He said in neighboring Egypt, trials are underway of former government officials.

“I think that that the future, frankly, of modern international criminal law is that countries stepping forward and prosecuting those who abuse their own citizens, versus the International Criminal Court stepping in. The International Criminal Court has always been a court of last resort,” he said.

You May Like

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

Judge Declares Washington DC Ban on Public Handguns Unconstitutional

Ruling overturns capital city's prohibition on carrying guns in pubic More

Pricey Hepatitis C Drug Draws Criticism

Activists are using the International AIDS Conference to criticize drug companies for charging high prices for life-saving therapies 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.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid