ICC Seeks Red Notice for Qaddafi
With Muammar Qaddafi's nowhere to be found, the International Criminal Court (ICC) asked Interpol Thursday to issue Red Notice arrest warrants for the fugitive Libyan leader, wanted for alleged crimes against humanity.
"Arresting Qaddafi is a matter of time," said Luis Moreno-Ocampo, chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands.
The court also asked for Red Notices on Qaddafi's son, Saif al-Islam Qaddafi, and his brother-in-law, Abdullah Al-Senussi, who served as the regime's intelligence chief. They are also wanted for alleged killings and persecution in the Libyan uprising that erupted in February.
The Red Notice allows Interpol, the international police agency, to widely circulate arrest warrants with an intention to extradite suspects to the criminal court, but require the cooperation of national authorities to execute.
The court's actions came amid another round of claims made by Libya's new leadership about the fugitive leader and his family.
A spokesman for the new Tripoli Military Council said anti-Qaddafi fighters had cornered the fallen Libyan leader and that he had no means of escape. But Anees Al-Sharif did not divulge a location.
Abdallah Kenshil, a National Transitional Council member who is negotiating with tribal leaders for a loyalist surrender, said two of Qaddafi's sons had been spotted in Bani Walid, one of the last loyalist strongholds about 150 kilometers (93 miles) southeast of Tripoli.
"We know that Saif al-Islam Qaddafi and Mutassim Qaddafi are inside Bani Walid," Kenshil said. "Eyewitnesses we know by name inside Bani Walid told us they saw them."
But the caretaker rebel government's statements could not be independently verified. Anti-Qaddafi fighters have made claims before about the arrests or killings of Qaddafi's sons which later were proved false.
Qaddafi, on the run, has not been seen in public in months, but has made repeated radio addresses taunting the rebels, threatening to burn Libya in his campaign to win it back, and insisting he is still in the country.
Questions about Qaddafi's whereabouts intensified after the fall of Tripoli and reports that his wife, daughter, two sons and other family members fled to neighboring Algeria, which described its acceptance of the family as a humanitarian gesture.
Two Libyan military convoys loyal to Qaddafi passed through Niger into Burkina Faso this week, officials in Niger said. The US State Department said Qaddafi was not believed to be in the convoy, but there has been speculation Qaddafi - who is believed to have some $4.2 billion in funds at his disposal - may follow and launch an insurgency from abroad.
Two weeks ago officials in Burkina Faso offered Qaddafi asylum saying, even though they are signatories to the ICC treaty, they would not allow his extradition.
US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said earlier this week that officials believe Qaddafi is on the run. "I don't have any information as to exactly where he's located," he said.