Report: Niger offers asylum to Gaddafi son

November 12, 2011 00:38

JOHANNESBURG - Niger's President Mahamadou Issoufou said on Friday he had granted Muammar Gaddafi's son Saadi asylum on humanitarian grounds but did not know the location of another fugitive son Saif al-Islam, South African media reported.

The announcement will strain already troubled relations between Niger and Libya's interim rulers, who overthrew Muammar Gaddafi after an eight month uprising and want both sons to stand trial for alleged atrocities.

Saadi, a businessman and former professional footballer, is in Niger after escaping across the border from Libya when National Transitional Council (NTC) forces captured the capital Tripoli in August.

"We have agreed on granting asylum to Saadi Gaddafi for humanitarian reasons," the South African Press Association (SAPA) quoted Issoufou telling a news conference at the end of a two-day visit to South Africa.

Interpol has issued a "red notice" requesting member states to arrest Saadi with a view to extradition if they find him on their territory.

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