Tuesday 21 November 2017

Probe into Gaddafi over use of Viagra to promote rape

Edith M Lederer in New York

The chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court said yesterday he is investigating whether Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi provided Viagra to Libyan soldiers to promote the rape of women during the current conflict.

Luis Moreno Ocampo said his office was collecting evidence on rapes and had become "more convinced" that Gaddafi decided to punish women by using rape as a weapon, which would be a new method in the Libyan civil war of instilling fear and attempting to control the population.

He said some witnesses confirmed the Libyan government was buying containers of Viagra-type drugs to carry out the policy, and "to enhance the possibility to rape".

"We are trying to see who was involved," he said. Mr Moreno Ocampo said it was difficult to know how widespread the use of rape was in Libya.

He added: "In some areas we had a number of a hundred people raped. The issue for us was, can we attribute these rapes to Gaddafi himself, or is it something that happened in the barracks?"

On May 16, Mr Moreno Ocampo asked judges to issue arrest warrants for Gaddafi, his son Seif al-Islam Gaddafi and intelligence chief Abdullah al-Sanoussi, accusing them of committing crimes against humanity by targeting civilians in a crackdown against rebels.

Judges are evaluating that evidence.

Irish Independent

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