Last Gaddafi PM freed in Libya for 'health reasons'

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Former Libyan Prime Minister Baghdadi Al-Mahmoudi sits behind bars during the trial of Gaddafi-era figures at a courtroom in Tripoli, Libya, on April 20, 2015. –Courtesy photo

TRIPOLI - Baghdadi Al-Mahmoudi, Libya's last prime minister under ousted dictator Muammar Gaddafi, has been released from jail for health reasons four years after being sentenced to death, Tripoli's justice ministry said Saturday.

Mahmoudi, in his 70s, was premier when a NATO-backed uprising in 2011 toppled and killed Gaddafi.

He was handed the death sentence in July 2014 along with eight other Gaddafi-era officials including the leader's son Seif Al-Islam, over their alleged role in a bloody crackdown on protesters.

The justice ministry said Mahmoudi was released "for health reasons" at the recommendation of a medical commission "so that he could be treated at specialized medical centers".

It gave no further details on the nature of his illness or when he was liberated.

Mahmoudi was arrested in September 2011 as he tried to flee across the border to Tunisia, and was extradited to Libya the following year.

During his detention in Tunisia, he claimed that Libya had financed the 2007 election campaign of former French president Nicolas Sarkozy, according to his lawyers.

The French ex-president vehemently denied the allegations, initially made by Seif Al-Islam.

But Sarkozy was charged in March 2018 over accusations he accepted millions of euros from Gaddafi. -AFP


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