Seif al-Islam Gadhafi: Libyan leader’s son announces candidacy

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Seif al-Islam is a son of former Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi The son of the late Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi has announced his candidacy for president. Seif al-Islam…

Seif al-Islam Gadhafi: Libyan leader's son announces candidacy

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Seif al-Islam is a son of former Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi

The son of the late Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi has announced his candidacy for president.

Seif al-Islam Gadhafi says he wants to “establish a free and independent state that is an alternative to oppressive foreign regimes”.

He told delegates at a party convention in Tripoli that this would require “genuine ownership of property by Libyans as a starting point”.

Seif al-Islam was arrested in 2011, but spent years in detention in Libya and then in Morocco.

He was accused of involvement in the killing of protesters and a ban imposed on his involvement in politics was overturned by the International Criminal Court in 2015.

Seif al-Islam is wanted by the ICC for murder and imprisonment. He is in Algeria, where he has been living under house arrest.

Nasser al-Maneebi, leader of the Great Alliance for National Forces, Seif al-Islam’s political party, said he will stand in the election on May 23.

Image copyright AFP Image caption Seif al-Islam was captured by rebels in 2011

Seif al-Islam argues he was a victim of human rights abuses during the 2011 uprising against his father.

His father led the country from 1969 to his 2011 ousting.

Seif al-Islam is one of the most prominent Gadhafi sons and has been seen as heir apparent to his father.

He argued he was forced to leave Libya because of the uprising.

Libya descended into a civil war and became divided during the 2011 uprising against his father.

The country has been without a central government since that time, allowing militias to administer much of the oil-rich country, and Islamic State has used Libya as a launch pad for attacks across North Africa and the Middle East.

According to the BBC’s Rabab Abdulhadi in Tripoli, the Libyan people would welcome Seif al-Islam to the presidency, if he can remain in power for the longer term.

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