THE HAGUE - Four members of the International Criminal Court have been arrested and are being held in Libya, the tribunal said Saturday, calling on the authorities there to free them. The ICC team had been held since Thursday, having travelled to Libya to meet Seif al-Islam, the detained son of Gaddafi. The visit was by ICC lawyers appointed to handle Seif’s defence. “We are very concerned about the safety of our staff in the absence of any contact with them,” ICC president Sang-Hyun said in the statement. “These four international civil servants have immunity when on an official ICC mission,” said Judge Song in the ICC statement.
The ICC court is seeking to try Seif and Gaddafi’s former intelligence chief for crimes against humanity. But the new regime in Libya wants to put Seif on trial in a local court.
Earlier Saturday, sources in Libya reported that the authorities there had arrested one of Seif’s defence lawyers, accusing her of having tried to pass “dangerous” documents to him.
The lawyer, Australian Melinda Taylor, works with Xavier-Jean Keita, the defence attorney appointed by the ICC.
Ahmed al-Jehani, Libya’s representative to the ICC said Taylor was “under house arrest in Zintan, not in prison,” and was being questioned.
Also arrested was an unidentified woman said to be acting as Taylor’s interpreter.