Libya gives Switzerland deadline for convicted man surrender

Libyan Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa had issued the ultimatum to European diplomats in Tripoli.

Libya gives Switzerland deadline for convicted man surrender

Several dozen Libyan police surrounded the Swiss embassy in Tripoli on Monday after issuing an ultimatum for Switzerland to hand over two of its nationals who have been sheltering there, a Reuters reporter said.

The reporter, who was at the scene, said he saw one of the Swiss men, Rachid Hamdani, come out of the embassy building and climb into a car driven by Libyan officials.

Earlier, Libya has given the Swiss embassy in Tripoli until 12 noon on Monday to hand over a Swiss national who has taken refuge there so he can serve out a jail sentence, Al-Jazeera reported from Qatar.

Libyan Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa had issued the ultimatum to European diplomats in Tripoli, said the channel.

The station was referring to Max Goeldi, who a Libyan appeal court sentenced to four months in jail for having overstayed his visa and illegal business activity.

Goeldi and another Swiss businessman, Rashid Hamdani, were convicted of identical charges.

But while those against Hamdani were dropped in January, Goeldi's original 16-month sentence was only reduced to four months on appeal.

Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa summoned European Union ambassadors on Sunday night to hand them the ultimatum, Jana news agency said.

The agency quoted the minister as saying that by giving Swiss businessman Max Goeldi refuge in its embassy in Tripoli, Switzerland was in violation of international conventions on diplomatic immunity.

"Procedures will be taken in the event that the embassy does not implement what is required of it by the deadline," the news agency reported. No details were given of what action the Libyan authorities plan to take.

Agencies

Last Mod: 22 Şubat 2010, 12:08
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