By Ashraf Abdul-Wahab.
Tripoli, 6 September:
Muammar Qaddafi’s former foreign minister and the former head of the General People’s Congress will stand trial . . .[restrict]on 10 September, the office of the attorney general announced yesterday.
Both are facing charges of financial crimes committed whilst in office. It is understood that investigations into other alleged crimes are still ongoing, including the involvement of both men in seeking to suppress last year’s revolution.
Abdul Ati Al-Obeidi twice served as Qaddafi’s foreign minister, from 1982-1984 and subsequently during last year’s revolution, when he replaced Musa Kusa following the latter’s flight and defection to the United Kingdom on 30 March 2011. He also served as “head of state” and prime minister.
Mohammed Azwai also held several positions in the regime, including head of the General People’s Congress, Justice Minister and Ambassador to the United Kingdom.
The most senior regime figure to have stood trial thus far is Abu Zeid Dorda, Qaddafi’s former external intelligence chief.
However, that trial, which first began on 5 June, has been adjourned no fewer than four times, most recently on 28 August, with the court having been in session no more than a few hours in every case.
It is suspected that the trials of both Obeidi and Azwai may follow a similar pattern. [/restrict]