By Abdulkader Assad
Attorneys for Libyan victims of crimes committed by warlord and commander of the Libyan self-styled army, Khalifa Haftar, have filed a formal complaint with the French Prosecutor General’s Office, according to the President of Democracy and Human Rights Foundation, Emadeddin Zahri Muntasser.
According to Muntasser, the complaint detailed crimes perpetrated by Haftar, including the torture and murder of Libyan civilians in Benghazi and its surrounding.
“French law No. 2010-930 permits the filing of such complaints even if the accused were not a French citizen.” Muntasser remarked.
Worth mentioning is that Haftar was recently in Paris for medical treatment.
According to Muntasser, the complaint was filed on behalf of Mr. Ali Hamza and other victims whose family members were starved, tortured, and killed by warlord Haftar.
“French law allows the Prosecutor General ninety days to consider opening an investigation of such crimes. If the Prosecutor General fails to investigate, the victims are permitted to directly file with an investigative judge and request an independent investigation.” Muntasser explains.
He also stressed that he wanted to remind the supporters of Khalifa Haftar that International law and the Rome Statute criminalize aiding and abetting war criminals.
“Those who provide material or moral assistance to perpetrators of war crimes and genocide are held personally accountable regardless of military rank or political office.” He remarked.
He also made clear that the new filing in France complements other filings in the United States and International Criminal Court (ICC).
Muntasser said that the complaints aim to bring to justice “a killer whose crimes spanned almost fifty years and inflicted death, pain, and suffering on countless victims in Chad and in Libya.”