Tripoli: March 28
NTC head Mustafa Abdul Jalil has announced that only the current lack of an extradition treaty is hindering . . .[restrict]efforts to have Saadi Qaddafi handed over by the Niger government.
In breaking the news, Jalil also deplored the fact that what he called “thugs” of the former regime, sheltering in other countries, were not being returned to Libya to face trial.
Saadi was smuggled out of Libya last September in a mercenary operation funded with money from Canadian company SNC-Lavelin and organised by the firm’s local fixer, Riadh Ben Aïssa, a Qaddafi family friend. In the days after Saadi appeared in Niamey, the capital, Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou insisted that Qaddafi’s third son was being treated as a refugee.
Jalil however revealed today: “We have talked with the Niger authorities about the extradition of Saadi Qaddafi and a number of his associates, and they are willing to hand him over. But unfortunately no extradition treaty exists between us.”
He added that ministerial talks were under way between the two countries to put such a treaty in place.
Jalil’s optimistic comments about Niger’s readiness to return Saadi, echo his belief last week that Qaddafi’s brother-in-law and intelligence chief, Abdullah al-Senussi would be sent back to Libya by the Mauritanian authorities, who have him in custody
However diplomatic sources say it looks increasingly likely that Senussi will be handed over to France, after being lured from Morocco to Mauritania in a sting operation organised by French intelligence. [/restrict]