Colonel Gaddafi’s former intelligence chief is prepared to reveal key details about the former dictator’s support for the IRA, it has been claimed.
Abdullah Senussi, who was Gaddafi’s brother-in-law and a notoriously brutal figure in the former regime, is now in a Tripoli jail awaiting trial on charges of crimes against humanity.
But south Armagh victims’ campaigner Willie Frazer, who for more than a decade has been campaigning for compensation from Tripoli for victims of the IRA’s Gaddafi-supplied weaponry, told RTE that Senussi had offered to assist the IRA victims.
He said that contact had been made with Gaddafi’s former confidante via individuals he had met at an anti-Gaddafi protest in New York in 2009.
Mr Frazer told the News Letter: “He’s prepared to talk to us if our Government would get us out there.
“If you had money you could have greased palms and got into the prison, but the other way is for our Government to get us out.”
Mr Frazer said that he was sceptical about the sincerity of the British Government in wanting IRA victims to speak directly to Senussi, given how much he is believed to know about Colonel Gaddafi’s support for republican terrorists.
“He knows exactly who the main movers were,” he said.
“He knows who was involved in coming out to get trained, what they were trained in, which Irish passports were involved, who set the meetings up and who the money went to, right down to what accounts it was transferred to.
“They got massive amounts of weapons, but they also got massive amounts of money.”
Mr Frazer said he was frustrated by the length of time which the campaign for Libyan compensation has taken, with more than a decade passing since he began pressing for recompense.
With the north African state now teetering on the brink of renewed civil war, Mr Frazer admitted that it looks increasingly unlikely that victims will be able to get their money from Tripoli. Instead, he said that pressure was now being put on David Cameron to use frozen assets of Gaddafi within the UK to compensate Ulster victims.
Jonathan Ganesh, who was injured by the IRA’s London Docklands bomb in 1996, told RTE that a proposed victims’ visit to Libya had been put on hold at the last minute.
Mr Frazer said that the trip had been called off because of the security situation in the country but that he was still prepared to travel there.
British and other western diplomats withdrew from Libya earlier this month as fighting between rival militias intensified, with widespread loss of life.
Last week Tripoli’s police chief was shot dead, while hundreds of other people have reportedly been killed over recent weeks.
Fighting has centred on the capital, Tripoli, and Libya’s second city, Benghazi.
Earlier this month a Royal Navy warship helped almost 100 Britons leave the country, while hundreds of others had already left without Government assistance.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is advising against all travel to the north African country.
The most recent FCO advice warns about “the more intense and more widespread fighting in Tripoli” and “greater instability throughout the country”. It adds: “British nationals in Libya are strongly urged to leave immediately by commercial means.”
Earlier this month the British Embassy in Triploi temporarily closed. Prior to that, a British diplomatic convoy was subject to an attempted car-jacking between Tripoli and Zawiya, with shots fired.