Nov. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Former Libyan Prime Minister Baghdadi Mahmudi’s lawyers said they are pressing ahead with efforts to persuade Tunisia’s caretaker president not to sign a decree to hand him over to the Libyan authorities.
“In cooperation with international non-governmental organizations, we will continue defending Baghdadi Mahmudi to unveil the violations committed by the Tunisian judiciary on extradition measures,” defense attorney Mabrouk Korchid said today by phone. “Tunisia’s interim president, Fouad Mebazaa, has the power to refrain from signing the extradition order.”
Mahmudi fled to neighboring Tunisia shortly after Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi’s rule collapsed in August. News agencies including Xinhua reported in September that Mahmudi had begun a hunger strike to protest his detention.
The Tunisian Human Rights Defense League also asked Mebazaa not to extradite Mahmudi, Tunisia’s TAP news agency said yesterday, citing a statement. The group said it “fears Mahmudi will be executed and deprived, following the Libyan current situation, of the right to a fair trial, offering guarantees to the rights of defense,” according to TAP.
An appeals court yesterday rejected an earlier court order for Mahmudi to be released, Korchid said. A Tunisian court decided Nov. 8 to extradite the former premier after a request by the National Transitional Council, which now controls Libya.
--With assistance from Ola Galal in Cairo. Editors: Jennifer M. Freedman, Heather Langan
To contact the reporter on this story: Jihen Laghmari in Tunis through the London newsroom at firstname.lastname@example.org
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