Libya ICC: Gaddafi co-accused
- 27 June 2011
- From the section Africa
Three top Libyan figures are wanted by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity.
Along with Libyan leader Col Muammar Gaddafi, his son, Saif al-Islam, and brother-in-law, Abdullah al-Sanussi, head of Libya's intelligence services, are accused.
Saif al-Islam Gaddafi
Saif al-Islam Gaddafi - the second of Col Gaddafi's nine children - has had a far more prominent role in the Libyan political scene than his brothers or sisters.
Well-educated and a fluent English speaker, Saif al-Islam was previously viewed by the West as the reform-minded face of the Gaddafi regime.
The 38-year-old holds an MBA from Vienna University and in 2008, received a PhD from the London School of Economics (LSE).
He also runs the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation.
Some saw him as his father's most-likely successor, a suggestion he played down.
He owns a house in London and has had links to British political figures as well as the royal family. He has met the Duke of York many times and is said to have visited both Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle.
But his ties to Britain went under the microscope after the crackdown on Libya's protests when they broke out in February.
In March, LSE director Howard Davies resigned from his post after facing criticism for accepting donations from Saif al-Islam's foundation.
The university is also investigating the authenticity of Saif al-Islam's PhD thesis, which focused on good governance and civil society.
Despite his musings on democracy, Saif al-Islam appears to have sided with his father over the need to quash protests in Libya and the armed rebel groups which have emerged from them.
Shortly after the uprising began, he described protesters in the eastern city of Benghazi as "drunkards and thugs" and warned of civil war.
Intelligence chief Abdullah al-Sanussi, who is married to the sister of Col Gaddafi's wife, is one of the veteran leader's most trusted aides.
A prominent figure in Libya, Brig Gen Sanussi held various roles during Gaddafi's tenure, including deputy chief of the external security organisation.
He is also said to be a close adviser to Saif al-Islam, according to leaked US embassy documents.
He has been accused in the past of human rights abuses, including his implication in the massacre in 1996 of more than 1,000 inmates at the Abu Salim prison in Tripoli.
He has been unable to travel abroad since he was convicted in absentia in 1999 by France for his role in the bombing of a French UTA passenger plane in 1989.
The plane blew up over the West African country of Niger, killing 170 people.
He was already on a US treasury department blacklist of senior Libyan officials whose assets can be frozen if they are found inside US jurisdiction.
He is also said to have extensive business interests, like other members of Libya's political elite.
Since the Libyan revolt broke out, Brig Gen Sanussi has been accused of ordering the killing of protesters and recruiting foreign mercenaries fighting for Col Gaddafi.
Some media reports initially suggested he was planning to defect, joining the former foreign minister Moussa Koussa, but the claims were soon denied.