Free the Tripoli Six

by John Quiggin on September 22, 2006

This Nature editorial reports the alarming news that six international health workers face execution in Libya on bogus charges of spreading HIV. As the editorial points out, despite the absence of any real improvement in its human rights record, Libya is being treated as a Beacon of Light by both the US and EU because it has backed off its previous support for terrorism and WMDs. It should be made clear to the Gaddafi regime that murdering health workers is on a par with terrorism as a crime against the international community.

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{ 4 comments }

1

Jack 09.22.06 at 10:23 am

Does anybody know why Gaddafi would want to let the execution of the six health workers procede?

Most beneficiaries of letter writing campaigns and international lobbying of this sort are political opponents of the regime in power but these people do not seem to be that kind of threat. Is the case of great public notoriety in Libya? Are they scapegoats? Will some prominent figure be in the firing line if the expats are not held responsible? Has Gaddafi made political capital out of resistance to external pressure?

Some understanding of the source of Libyan resistance might make for better letters. Clearly the medical review is helpful but also clearly it has not been sufficient.

2

joejoejoe 09.22.06 at 10:31 am

The Center for Nursing Advocacy has a letter writing campaign that is lobbying the Libyan Amb. to the UN.

http://www.nursingadvocacy.org/action/letters/2005/libya/l_form.html

The Questionable Resistance blog (at ScienceBlogs) has a handy list of contacts in the US and International community to lobby on behalf of these health care workers.

http://scienceblogs.com/authority/2006/09/the_tripoli_six_do_something_a.php

3

joejoejoe 09.22.06 at 10:42 am

Correction – It’s ‘The Questionable Authority’ blog. I don’t know where I got ‘Resistance’. And apologies for the long link.

4

Anthony 09.23.06 at 3:40 pm

Having your sentance commuted to life for something you haven’t done is hardly a breakthrough. (Note:a comment suggesting the possibility that the sentence would be commuted was deleted at the author’s request – JQ)

I’ve been following this for over two years, links to all my posts, are at the bottom of this page.

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