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Second Libya trials postponed to January

A second round of legal proceedings against two Swiss nationals held in Libya has been postponed, the foreign ministry said on Sunday.

Max Göldi and Rachid Hamdani had been scheduled to be tried on Saturday and Sunday respectively on charges of conducting illegal economic activities.

Their trials will take place on January 2 and January 3, spokesman Erik Reumann said.

The two men have already been convicted of visa violations in a dispute stemming back to the July 2008 arrest of a son of Libyan leader Moammar Gadaffi in Geneva.

The two businessmen, who worked for Swiss companies in Libya, were on November 30 sentenced to 16 months in prison and fined the equivalent of around SFr1,560 ($1,500). It is unclear when their appeals will take place.

They have been held since July 19, 2008 despite mediation efforts by Swiss authorities and protests from international human rights groups. and agencies