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2012-03-18

Kadhafi intelligence chief captured in Mauritania

Moamer Kadhafi's former intelligence chief and brother-in-law was arrested Friday (March 16th) in Nouakchott. Abdullah Senussi was captured with a fake Malian passport along with a young man believed to be his son after their arrival on a Royal Air Maroc flight from Casablanca.

Senussi stands accused of numerous crimes in Libya and abroad, most notably the 1996 Abu Slim prison massacre that left more than 1,200 people dead. The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant for Senussi last June in which the 62-year-old was accused of being an "indirect perpetrator of crimes against humanity of murder and persecution based on political grounds" for his response to the Libyan revolution.

Libyan government spokesman Nasser al-Manaa said Tripoli authorities would seek his extradition from Mauritania, adding that the government was ready to give Senussi a "fair trial". Al-Manaa also noted Mauritania was not a signatory to the Rome Statue establishing the ICC. Meanwhile, Libya's representative to the ICC, Ahmed Jehani, issued a statement saying a high-level delegation was on its way to Nouakchott for talks on extraditing Senussi to Libya.

The former Kadhafi official is also wanted in France where he was convicted in absentia for his role in the 1989 bombing of a civilian airliner over Niger that claimed 170 lives.

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