A court in Sebha has restored Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, the son of Libya’s former leader, as a presidential candidate.
Khaled al-Zaydi, Gaddafi’s lawyer, confirmed his client’s appeal was approved on Thursday, calling the court’s decision “a victory for justice and the people’s will.”
Gaddafi’s campaign page on Twitter featured a photo of the happy candidate, coupled with words of gratitude to God.
A video of Gaddafi’s followers was shown after that. The accompanying text reads, “Liberals rejoice Dr. Saif Al-return Islam’s to the elections.”
Because of his 2015 in absentia conviction for war crimes, Gaddafi was disqualified by the country’s election body. He maintains his innocence despite being sentenced to death by a Tripoli court. In addition, the International Criminal Court has issued an arrest warrant for him (ICC). His appeal was met with challenges, including an attack on the court by gunmen afterwards referred to as “a bunch of outlaws” by the Tripoli administration.
Libya’s election is scheduled on December 24, and the entire list of candidates will be disclosed in the coming days.
Gaddafi has promised to “restore the lost unity” of Libya, which was thrown into civil war in 2011 after Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown and brutally murdered by NATO-backed rebels.
In his presidential bid, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi will face stiff competition from military commander Khalifa Haftar, the de facto leader of Eastern Libya.