Libyan militia frees Gaddafi's son from jail


A Libyan armed militia has released Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, the son of former Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, the militia group has announced.

Saif al-Islam had been in custody since November 2011 after his father was ousted and subsequently killed in an uprising in the North African country.

In a statement late Saturday, the Abu Bakr al-Seddiq Brigade, which controls the western town of Zintan, said Gaddafi's son had been released from prison on Friday and left the town.

The statement said Saif al-Islam had been freed under an amnesty promulgated by the East Libya-based parliament.

Saif al-Islam's release has drawn immediate condemnation from the local and military councils in Zintan.

In a joint statement on Sunday, the two councils described the move as "collusion, a betrayal to the blood of the martyrs and a stab in the back of the military institution".

During Gaddafi's rule, Saif al-Islam had been his heir apparent. When the uprising against Gaddafi broke out in 2011, he returned to Tripoli to support his father.

After Gaddafi was killed in August of 2011, Saif al-Islam was captured in the Sahara Desert while trying to flee to Niger.

In 2014, he was put on trial for war crimes and sentenced to death, but human rights groups and the UN said there was a lack of due process at his trial.

Since Gaddafi's departure, Libya has remained in a state of turmoil with the country's stark political divisions yielding at least three different seats of government and a host of rival militia groups.

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