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ICRC flies former detainees to Tripoli

Five Libyans released from detention on Saturday by anti-government rebels have been flown back to Tripoli by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

The Geneva-based ICRC said the five, who had been held by rebels in Benghazi, were civilians.

“To the best of our knowledge these five were not members of the Libyan armed forces,” an ICRC spokeswoman said.

Libyan rebels said the five were soldiers loyal to Moammar Gaddafi. The rebels said they had released the five as a goodwill gesture aimed at boosting their credibility internationally.

The neutral ICRC said it had visited some 200 detainees in the rebels’ custody over the last two months, and renewed its calls to for permission to visit prisoners held by Gaddafi’s forces.

“The ICRC stands ready to continue acting as a neutral intermediary between the National Transitional Council and the Libyan government to provide humanitarian services such as transferring prisoners across frontlines, “ the ICRC said in a statement.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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