ICC prosecutor may bring Libya rape charges

THE HAGUE Wed Nov 9, 2011 7:17am EST

In this file photo, Abdullah Al-Senussi, head of the Libyan Intelligence Service speaks to the media in Tripoli August 21, 2011. REUTERS/Paul Hackett

In this file photo, Abdullah Al-Senussi, head of the Libyan Intelligence Service speaks to the media in Tripoli August 21, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Paul Hackett

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THE HAGUE (Reuters) - The International Criminal Court prosecutor said Wednesday he may charge Muammar Gaddafi's spy chief, Abdullah al-Senussi, and others suspected of involvement in hundreds of rapes in Libya during this year's conflict.

The Hague-based court has already indicted Senussi on charges of crimes against humanity and other war crimes.

ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo said he was close to completing an investigation into the use of rape by Gaddafi's forces as they battled an eight-month insurgency.

"I am finishing the rapes investigation; we will see if there are new charges for the same people, or for new people," he told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference in The Hague.

Earlier this month, Moreno-Ocampo told the U.N. Security Council he was investigating whether the former Libyan leader, now dead, and his spy chief ordered mass rapes.

"We have indications that Senussi was involved in organizing the rapes, but not Saif," Moreno-Ocampo told Reuters, referring to Gaddafi's son Saif al-Islam, who has also been charged with crimes against humanity and is on the run.

Moreno-Ocampo told reporters Wednesday that the last time he had contact with Saif al-Islam was two weeks ago, and that he was still working with state parties on how to arrest him.

The ICC said on October 29 that Saif al-Islam was in contact via intermediaries about possibly surrendering, but that it also had information that mercenaries were trying to take him to a friendly African nation where he could evade arrest.

"I am confident we will get Saif," to face charges in The Hague, Moreno-Ocampo told Reuters. "At the end of the day, all of them will face justice."

Libya's interim leadership, the National Transitional Council (NTC), has said it would like to try Saif al-Islam and Senussi in Libya. Moreno-Ocampo said he planned to meet the NTC in January.

Muammar Gaddafi died on October 20 shortly after his capture by the former rebels, now the government forces.

(Reporting by Sara Webb)

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