Deal close to allow Gaddafi's son to be tried in Tripoli

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The International Criminal Court (ICC) could drop its demand to try Muammar Gaddafi's most prominent son in the Hague, it was reported yesterday.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi was captured in the desert by the Zintan fighter brigade following last year's Libyan uprising. The ICC issued a warrant for his arrest in June last year, with prosecutors accusing him of involvement in the killings of rebels during the revolt that led to the removal – and killing – of his father.

But the Libyan government has resisted handing him over to the Hague, repeatedly calling for him to be tried in Tripoli. But the BBC reported yesterday that the ICC could soon drop its demand and allow the son and heir apparent of the former Libyan leader to be tried under its supervision. The Libyan Justice Ministry was said to be close to agreeing a groundbreaking deal with the ICC that would allow the case to go ahead on Libyan soil.

The news comes just days after Libyan authorities showed off a new courtroom in a former military school in the capital to demonstrate that they were fit to try Saif, who has been held in a secret prison since being caught last year.

"We will respect the international law but we do have a lot of respect for our Libyan law and guarantee you there will be no problem," Prime Minister Abdurrahim El-Keib said as he toured the new facility last week.

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