Libyan dissident wins right to sue Jack Straw over UK role in rendition

A Libyan dissident who claims the UK participated in his abduction and rendition under the Gaddafi regime has won the right to sue former foreign secretary Jack Straw. The claim is against Mr Straw and Sir Mark Allen, MI6's counter-terrorism chief at the time they were taken in 2004, as well as against the Home Office and Foreign Office. The Government attempted to block the damages claim, but that failed at the Supreme Court on Tuesday. Now seven Supreme Court justices have upheld that decision and the action can go to trial. In a statement, Mr Straw said: "At no stage so far have the merits of the applicant's case been tested before any court.

January 17, 2017 13:21 UTC

Number of Suspected Dead Climbs From Shipwreck off Libya

Aid groups have revised to at least 170 the number of suspected dead from a weekend migrant shipwreck off Libya. The International Organization of Migration and U.N. refugee agency increased the estimate after interviewing the four survivors of the shipwreck who arrived in Trapani, Sicily, on Monday aboard the Norwegian rescue ship Siem Pilot. IOM spokesman Flavio Di Giacomo said the survivors included four men and one woman from Ethiopia and Eritrea. They reported having set off from Libya...

January 17, 2017 11:42 UTC

Libyan wins right to sue ex-Foreign Secretary Jack Straw

Image copyright Getty ImagesEx-Foreign Secretary Jack Straw faces being sued over allegations of abduction and torture brought by a former Libyan dissident. Abdul-Hakim Belhaj claims MI6, which Mr Straw was then responsible for, helped the US kidnap him in Bangkok in 2004 to return him and his wife to Tripoli. Mr Straw - among several parties in the case - rejects claims that he had been aware of the rendition. Lawyers for Mr Belhaj, 50, say he is determined to sue unless he receives an apology and a token £1 in damages. Image caption Mr Straw denies any wrongdoingThe Court of Appeal ruling said Mr Belhaj's allegations concerned "particularly grave violations of international law and human rights".

January 17, 2017 10:14 UTC

Europe to see an increase in economic refugees and migrants this year

Refugees have been fleeing to Europe and their death toll is also increasing at an alarming rate. Europe will see an increase of refugees seeking asylum in its countries. The “economic migrants” flee to Europe with mere chances of being able to stay in these countries. The winter has not let this people give up fleeing to Europe by taking the most dangerous route by the Mediterranean Sea. Libya and Egypt are the main points where the migrants start their journey seeking asylum.

January 16, 2017 23:12 UTC

Third Force: Fuel and gas cylinders arrive in Sabha

The commander of the Third Force that is securing the southern region, Jamal Al-Triki, said fuel and cooking gas arrived in Sabha oil stock, pointing out that the operation was secured by the Third Force personnel. Talking to the press, Al-Triki said Monday that the fuel started arriving in the city on last Saturday while the trucks loaded with cooking gas cylinders have resumed the journey to Sabha this morning.

January 16, 2017 20:44 UTC

Haftar has contracted US Blackwater military company to help in war on Benghazi

The pilots who are conducting airstrikes in support for the rogue General Khalifa Haftar and are taking off from Kharuba airbase near Al-Marij city are private military contractors that have been hired as mercenaries by Haftar, reported War is Boring website. “Most of the for-profit aviators are American, according to IOL. Prince denied involvement in the UAE air operations.” War is Boring indicated. This new intelligence report is a blindingly obvious revelation of the truth behind the true identity of the pilots Haftar is using in his war on Benghazi, which has been under day-to-day destruction by Dignity Operation forces since May 2014. Several news reports have disclosed over the last two years the involvement of American, French, EU and Egyptian pilots among the Haftar-led forces in eastern Libya.

January 16, 2017 18:08 UTC

NOC to sue blockers of key Al-Zawiya gas pipeline, Al-Feel oilfield at Attorney General's office

The National Oil Corporation (NOC) said it had sent the case of the shutdown of Al-Feel oilfield and Bier Terfas gas pipeline to the Attorney General’s Office in Tripoli. A group of the southern Petroleum Facilities Guard from the Tubu tribe in Libya’s south has shut down Al-Feel oilfield and prevented the workers from resuming oil production to prolong the closure of the field after it had been shut over the last two years.

January 16, 2017 17:15 UTC

‘The EU will stick together,’ Mogherini says as Trump takes another swipe at Europe

"I believe others will leave," Trump told prominent leave campaigner Michael Gove in an interview. “You look at the European Union and it’s Germany. This is a bit of an invitation that we are making to Mr. Trump. To remain a bloc. The UK is still a member of the EU so this must also be taken into consideration.

January 16, 2017 16:52 UTC

News Roundup - Mon, Jan 16, 2017

_________________Oil vessel, Nerva Concert, left Brega oil terminal on Sunday laden with 631 thousand oil barrels heading to the UK. Sirte Gas Company said on Facebook that that was the first oil shipment to head to the UK since 2011. _________________Two children died in Mizda town when a candle lighting their room led to a fire amid the continuing power outage for log hours. He added that there are 60 newborns, inside the hospital’s incubators and they could suffer from polio or die if the power outage issue is not resolved. It said it gave diesel fuel to Al-Jalaa Neonatal Hospital, Accidents Hospital in Al-Zawiya St. and Medical Supplies Apparatus.

January 16, 2017 15:33 UTC

George Vella casts doubt on EU-Libya migration deal

It would use European money and expand an agreement already in place between Italy and Libya.Muscat said “there is already a framework that has been negotiated. It’s time to come up with a different way of doing things, the Prime Minister’s suggestion is a crude twist on his failed attempt at push-backs to Libya just three years ago. Refugees deserve better. It does this by granting international protection to the vast majority of Libyan nationals seeking protection in Malta. Will this be Malta’s legacy for its Presidency?”Not since the Cold War have relations between Russia and the West been more dangerous than they are now.

January 16, 2017 06:01 UTC

Special Deterrent Force transfers migrants to Tripoli shelter centers

A big number of illegal migrants were transferred to the shelter centers of the Tripoli-based Illegal Immigration Fight Center (IIFC) after being busted in Gargaresh district in the capital, the Special Deterrent Force (SDF) declared on Sunday. “After storming into the drugs and alcohol dens in Gargaresh, our forces nabbed a number of African illegal migrants.” The SDF said on Facebook, adding that it kept some of the migrants at its headquarters as they are suspected to be part of organized gangs that work in making and selling liquor.

January 15, 2017 18:52 UTC

Benghazi Shura Council downs Dignity Operation warplane in Benghazi, pilot survives

The fighters of Benghazi Shura Council (BSC) shot down a warplane of Dignity Operation forces while it was air attacking Ganfouda on Sunday in western Benghazi. BSC sources added that Haftar’s air force’s MiG 23 was targeted by “heat-seekers” missiles by the BSC fighters. “The downing of the MiG 23 gave the besieged city of Ganfouda a break from the continuous bombardment of Haftar-led forces over the last few hours on Sunday.” The BSC sources remarked. Dignity Operation confirmed that its MiG 23 crashed down while it was on mission to rain down bombs on besieged Ganfouda, assuring that the pilot, Younis Al-Dinali, survived, as he ejected himself before it fell down. Lately, Dignity Operation air force renewed airstrikes on Ganfouda and Busanib in western Benghazi amid attempts to advance on the two areas, which are considered the last spots held by the BSC fighters after a ferocious war by Haftar’s Dignity Operation, which kicked off in May 2014.

January 15, 2017 17:08 UTC

Crisis warnings sound as EU gears up for new migrant wave

"The choice is trying to do something now, or meeting urgently in April, May...and try to do a deal then." In exchange, Turkey is supposed to receive billions of euros, visa-free travel for its citizens, and fast-tracked EU membership talks. The bottom line is that the Turkey deal works. Libya and Egypt are the main migrant departure points, and pacts with them would probably have the biggest immediate impact. Muscat wants to build on a deal Italy is trying to reach with Libya by adding EU funds and other support.

January 15, 2017 15:33 UTC

News Roundup - Sun, Jan 15, 2017

___________________The fighters of Benghazi Shura Council (BSC) shot down a warplane of Dignity Operation forces while it was air attacking Ganfouda on Sunday in western Benghazi. __________________Italian coastguards said they recovered 8 migrants’ bodies after their boat capsized 50 km off the Libyan coast on Saturday. They added that over 100 migrants were aboard the boat and are considered dead given the current bad weather conditions. Dignity Operation warplanes carried out several airstrikes on Derna last year killing and injuring many residents. __________________The pilot who was onboard the MiG 23 of Dignity Operation that was shot down in Benghazi today, Younis Al-Dinali, survived and is now in Benina, Benghazi, said sources from the Dignity Operation Command.

January 15, 2017 15:30 UTC

Eight migrants die as boat capsizes off Libyan coast, 17-year-old medically evacuated to Malta

Italian coastguard: At least eight migrants died when their boat overturned off the coast of Libya on Saturday but the death toll may be much higherAt least eight migrants have died when their boat overturned off the coast of Libya on Saturday but the death toll may be much higher, the Italian coastguard has said.Four people have been rescued but the survivors reported that more than a hundred were on board when the boat capsized around 30 miles (50 km) off Libya, a coastguard spokesman said. The inclement weather has not stopped human traffickers from sending migrants on sea crossings.French and Italian naval and merchant vessels as well as a plane and a helicopter were involved in rescue operations.Malta yesterday afternoon coordinated a medical evacuation of a 17-year-old boy who needed urgent medical assistance.The AFM dispatched an AW 139 helicopter with an AFM doctor on board who brought the patient to Malta and was handed over to medical staff from Mater Dei.The youth was accompanied by his brother who is also a minor.In the previous 24 hours, coastguard and naval ships as well as privately owned fishing and merchant vessels had saved around 750 migrants from rubber and wooden boats in the central Mediterranean, but also recovered five dead bodies, the coastguard said.Last year, a record 181,000 boat migrants, mostly from Africa, reached Italy. The majority paid Libyan people traffickers to make the journey.Last year was also the deadliest on record for migrants in the Mediterranean, with almost 5,000 deaths, according to the International Organization for Migration.

January 15, 2017 09:13 UTC

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