Two Britons in Libya accused of being spies

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The Independent Online

Two British journalists working for Iran's Press TV who were detained last month in Libya are suspected of being spies, the head of the militia which is holding them said last night.

Faraj al-Swehli, commander of the Swehli brigade, said his men had found among the journalists' possessions official Libyan documents, equipment used by the Israeli military and footage of them firing weapons.

"We believe they are spies," Mr Swehli said in Tripoli. He said it was too early to say which country they were spying for, but that this would be established by their investigation.

"After we have finished the investigation we are going to transfer them to the state authorities to pursue the legal process against them."

The two have been named as Nicholas Davies and Gareth Montgomery-Johnson. They were arrested on 22 February in Misrata, about 130 miles east of the capital. They are now being held in a base in central Tripoli.

Mr Swehli said the two men were being treated well, and that they had been visited in detention by British consular officials and representatives from New York-based Human Rights Watch.