Moussa Koussa, the former Libyan foreign minister who defected to Britain and is now attending the peace summit in Qatar, might decide not to return to the UK, European and Arab diplomats have suggested.
The British newspaper Daily Telegraph reported that campaigners in the UK may want Koussa to answer charges that, as Libya’s long-time intelligence chief, he was culpable of many crimes, including the 1988 bombing of a jetliner that exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing more than 270 people aboard the craft and on the ground.
While in England, Koussa was reportedly interrogated by both British intelligence officials and by Scottish police.
The British Foreign Secretary William Hague has earlier stated that Koussa would have no immunity from prosecution in exchange for his information. Hague has also suggested that Koussa was free to leave the UK whenever he wanted, given that he was never officially detained by British authorities.
However, according to other reports, Koussa informed British officials he wanted to return to London, where some family members are based.
The Telegraph reported that Morocco is one likely place where Koussa could end up, citing remarks by an Arab diplomat.
Ironically, this development occurred on the same day that the European Union lifted its sanctions against Koussa and unfroze his assets.
Robert Halfon, a Conservative British MP, criticized the lifting of sanctions against Koussa and has called for the Libyan to face trial.
Many people in Britain will be astonished by this action, because Moussa Koussa has yet to face a judicial process for his alleged crimes against humanity, Halfon said.
If he is to travel within Europe, it should be to The Hague and the International Criminal Court, where he should stand trial for his alleged crimes.
Meanwhile, in Qatar, Koussa is reportedly staying in the capital Doha as a guest of the Qatari royal family.
According to media reports, Libyan rebel figures in Qatar have refused to meet with Koussa, citing that as a long-time member of Gaddafi’s inner-circle he has blood on his hands. Some have referred to Koussa as Gaddafi's torturer-in-chief.
We did not invite him here. He is not part of our delegation, said rebel spokesman Mahmoud Shamman, according to the Daily Mail.
Another opposition figure, Benghazi-based Abdel-Hafidh Ghoga said a meeting with Koussa were “not on the agenda.”
Hague, who is co-chair of the Qatar summit, said of Koussa’s presence there: He was not invited to this meeting. But by being here in Doha, he has been able to engage in these wider discussions.”