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Politics

Libya electoral commission disqualifies Gaddafi’s son as presidential candidate

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The electoral commission of Libya on Wednesday rejected the nomination of Seif al-Islam Kadhafi, son of late dictator Muammar Gaddafi, to compete in next month’s presidential election.

Other candidates still in the race include eastern-based strongman Khalifa Haftar, temporary premier Abdulhamid Dbeibah, and former interior minister Fathi Bashagha, whose submissions were deemed valid by the committee.

The votes on December 24 come as Libya strives to end a decade of instability that has devastated the oil-rich country since a NATO-backed rebellion deposed and murdered Gadhafi in 2011.

Seif al-Islam, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court for suspected war crimes, was one of 25 applicants whose applications were rejected by the High National Election Commission of Libya (HNEC) panel, according to a statement.

It said that it denied the 25 based on legal reasons as well as information from authorities such as the public prosecutor, a police chief, and the director of the passports and citizenship department.

“The names mentioned are excluded from the preliminary list of candidates as they do not meet the prerequisites and have not submitted all the necessary documents,” the HNEC said.

In the instance of Seif al-Islam, the HNEC cited election law provisions requiring candidates to “not have been sentenced for a dishonourable crime” and have a clean criminal record.

Seif al-Islam, whose location had been kept hidden for months, became the first heavyweight contender to declare.

A Tripoli court had condemned him to death for acts committed during his father’s insurrection. A competing government in eastern Libya subsequently pardoned him.

In July, he revealed to the New York Times that he was plotting a political return.

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