Thursday, 14 April 2011

Gaddafi's former foreign minister to stay in Qatar

[This is the headline over a Deutsche-Presse Agentur news agency report on the Monsters and Critics website. It reads as follows:]

Libya's former foreign minister Musa Kusa has decided to stay in Qatar for the time being due to worries that the relatives of Libyan terror attack victims want him prosecuted, the Al Arabiya broadcaster said Thursday.

Kusa fled to London at the end of March, around six weeks after the start of the uprising against Moamer Gaddafi, and dissociated himself from the Libyan ruler.

It appears he initially thought he could play a role in the new Libya. But most opposition figures distrust him and Western countries are interested in information he could provide as former head of the intelligence service rather than cooperation with him.

After his arrival in London, Kusa was questioned about the bombing of a US airliner over Lockerbie in Scotland in 1988 that killed 270 people. Gaddafi allegedly ordered the attack. Kusa was not detained.

Kusa's predecessor as foreign minister, Abdel Rahman Shalgham, described him as the 'black box' of the Gaddafi regime.

Britain's decision to allow Kusa to attend a meeting of the Libya Contact Group in Qatar on Wednesday was criticized by some human rights groups and relatives of terror attack victims.

[A report published today on the Sify website reads in part:]

The Libyan rebels have refused to talk to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's former Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa at a summit in Qatar, saying he has blood on his hands, having been part of Gaddafi's inner circle.

Koussa, who is accused of being involved in the Lockerbie bombing case, fled to Qatar yesterday for an international summit on Libya to talk to Arab leaders about how to oust Gaddafi.

But a spokesmen for rebels attendingthe meet made it clear that they want nothing to do with the former intelligence chief, who was an integral part of Gaddafi's inner circle until he fled to Britain earlier this month.

"We did not invite him here. He is not part of our delegation," the Daily Mail quoted rebel spokesman Mahmoud Shamman, as saying.

In Benghazi, opposition spokesman Abdel-Hafidh Ghoga said talks with Koussa were 'not on the agenda'.

Senior Government sources said he has only been granted a 'time-limited' visa to stay in Britain, meaning he could be gone within six months.

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