Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, Muammar Gaddafi’s son, and Abdullah Senussi, Muammar Gaddafi’s former intelligence chief, face charges of crimes against humanity, brought by the International Criminal Court (ICC), for alleged offenses committed during the 2011 conflict. They are being detained in Zintan and Tripoli, respectively, while the ICC considers Libya’s bid to try Saif al-Islam Gaddafi domestically and while the Libyan authorities prepare a similar bid for Senussi.
Government and government-aligned forces ended a month-long military campaign in November against gunmen based in the town of Bani Walid, whom they accused of having supported Gaddafi and harboring wanted people. The attacking forces looted and destroyed property in the town after the fighting, and are believed to have arrested several hundred residents whose whereabouts are not known, prompting fears for their safety.
More than 50,000 people remained forcibly displaced from areas previously seen as pro-Gaddafi, particularly the town of Tawergha, where about 40,000 people have been unable to return. Tawerghans have been targeted for arrest and attack, mostly by militias from nearby Misrata, who accuse people from Tawergha of committing serious crimes against them during the war. In all, about 1,300 people from Tawergha are detained, missing, or dead. Abuses committed against Tawerghans may amount to crimes against humanity and could be prosecuted by the ICC, Human Rights Watch said.
Attacks on Sufi religious sites by armed groups with an acknowledged religious agenda put in question the government’s willingness and ability to protect the rights of religious minorities, Human Rights Watch said. During 2012, these groups destroyed some mosques, desecrated tombs, and damaged libraries, mostly in Tripoli, Benghazi, and Zliten, sometimes in full view of government security forces who failed to intervene.