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Protesters in Tripoli demand release of Gaddafi-era spy chief

The Address | Benghazi – Libya

TRIPOLI = Relatives and supporters of Libya’s Gaddafi-era intelligence chief, Abdullah Senussi, jailed for his alleged role in a bloody crackdown during the country’s 2011 uprising, protested in Tripoli on Saturday to demand his release.

Senussi, a brother-in-law of longtime dictator Muammar Gaddafi, was sentenced to death in 2015 over the part he allegedly played in the regime’s response to a NATO-backed uprising in 2011 toppled and killed Gaddafi.

Several dozen relatives and members of Senussi’s tribe, the Magerha, gathered in a central Tripoli square to demand he be freed over health concerns.

In a statement, the Magerha said his liberation would “contribute to and consolidate national reconciliation”.

Officials in Tripoli have not released specific details on his alleged health problems.

Senussi was extradited in September 2012 by Mauritania, where he had fled after Gaddafi’s fall.

He had also been the subject of an International Criminal Court arrest warrant for suspected war crimes during the 2011 uprising. But in an unusual move, in 2013 the court gave Libyan authorities the green light to put him on trial.

He has since been detained in the capital, along with some 40 other senior Gaddafi,-era officials including the dictator’s last prime minister Baghdadi Mahmudi.

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