Al-Saadi Gaddafi

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Al-Saadi Gaddafi
Personal information
Full name Al-Saadi Muammar Gaddafi
Date of birth (1973-05-25) 25 May 1973 (age 41)
Place of birth Tripoli, Libyan Arab Republic
Height 1.84 m (6 ft 12 in)
Playing position Forward
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2000–2001 Alahly Tripoli 24 (3)
2001–2003 Al-Ittihad Tripoli 74 (20)
2003–2004 Perugia 1 (0)
2005–2006 Udinese 1 (0)
2006–2007 Sampdoria 0 (0)
Total 76 (23)
National team
2000–2006 Libya 18 (2)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Al-Saadi Gaddafi (Arabic: الساعدي معمر القذافي‎; born 25 May 1973), is the third son of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. He is a Libyan former association football player. In 2011, he was the commander of Libya's Special Forces and was involved in the Libyan Civil War.[1] An Interpol notice (red notice) has been issued against him.[2] Al-Saadi was a part of his father's inner circle.[3] On 5 March 2014 he was arrested in Niger and extradited to Libya.[4]

Football career[edit]

Gaddafi is known for his involvement in Libyan football. On 6 June 2000, the BBC reported that Gaddafi had signed with Maltese champions Birkirkara F.C. and would play for them in the Champions League.[5] The move failed to materialize.

Libyan football was arranged to favor Saadi. One law forbade announcing the name of any football player with the exception of Saadi. Only numbers of other players were announced. Referees favored Saadi's club and security forces were used to silence protests.[6][7]

He signed for Italian Serie A team Perugia in 2003, employing Diego Maradona as his technical consultant and Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson as his personal trainer.[8] He made only one substitute appearance before failing a drug test.

"Even at twice his current speed he would still be twice as slow as slow itself."

—Analysis in la Repubblica after his brief appearance for Perugia.[9]

He was also captain of the Libya national football team, captain of his home club in Tripoli, and president of the Libyan Football Federation.[10]

Gaddafi joined UEFA Champions League qualifiers Udinese Calcio in 2005–06, playing only ten minutes in an end-of-season league match against Cagliari Calcio.

He joined U.C. Sampdoria during season 2006–07, without playing a single match.

Career statistics[edit]

Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Italy League Coppa Italia League Cup Europe Total
2003–04 Perugia Serie A 1 0
2004–05 Serie B 0 0
2005–06 Udinese Serie A 1 0
2006–07 Sampdoria Serie A 0 0
Total Italy 2 0
Career total 2 0

Business activities[edit]

In 2006, Al-Saadi Gaddafi and the Jamahiriya government launched a project to create a semi-autonomous city similar to Hong Kong in Libya, stretching 40 km between Tripoli and the Tunisian border. The proposed new city would become a high tech, banking, medical and educational center not requiring visas to enter. The city would have its own international airport and a major seaport. Gaddafi promised religious tolerance with both "synagogues and churches" and no discrimination in this new metropolis. The new city would have "Western-style" business laws that Saadi thought European and American companies would find welcoming and familiar.[11]

Saadi used to take great interest in the affairs of many of Libya's other business interests like Tamoil, the oil refining and marketing company owned by the Libyan government, before the overthrow of the regime.[11]

Judicial affairs[edit]

In July 2010, Gaddafi was ordered by an Italian court to pay 392,000 Euros to a luxurious Ligurian hotel for an unpaid bill dating back to a month-long stay in the summer of 2007.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Saadi is married to the daughter of al-Khweildi al-Hmeidi, a Libyan military commander.[13][14]

A US diplomatic cable in 2009 called Saadi "the black sheep" of Muammar Gaddafi's family. It mentioned scuffles with European police, "abuse of drugs and alcohol, excessive partying" and "profligate affairs with men and women".[15] Saadi's bisexuality had partly prompted the arrangement of his marriage to the commander's daughter, the cable said.[14] Gay pornography was reportedly found among Saadi's possessions when his home was ransacked by looters after the fall of Tripoli.[16]

Libyan civil war[edit]

On 15 March 2011, there were unconfirmed reports that a pilot by the name of Muhammad Mokhtar Osman had flown his jet into the Gaddafi stronghold of Bab al-Azizia in Tripoli damaging it and injuring Saadi and his brother Khamis.

Speaking to BBC Panorama, a former Jamahiriya soldier claimed that Saadi had personally ordered to shoot unarmed protesters in Benghazi when visiting the city's army barracks at the beginning of the uprising. Saadi confirmed that he had been at the barracks but denied giving orders to fire on protesters.[17]

Saadi was reportedly the driving force behind a change in fighting tactics of the government's forces. Instead of using heavy infantry, tanks and armored cars – which could easily be distinguished from the Free Libyan Army and then destroyed by allied fighter jets – the fight against the rebels was pursued with small, fast and versatile units.[18]

The rebels claimed that they captured him during the Battle of Tripoli, on 21 August, but later the claim turned out to be false.

On 24 August, Al-Saadi contacted CNN, stating that he had the authority to negotiate on behalf of loyalist forces, and wished to discuss a ceasefire with U.S. and NATO authorities.[19] A week later he contacted Al Arabiya, stating his father was ready to step down, and called for dialogue with the National Transitional Council.[20]

On 5 September, Saadi said in an interview with CNN that an "aggressive" speech by his brother Saif al-Islam had led to the breakdown of talks between NTC forces and Gaddafi loyalists in Bani Walid, and said he had not seen his father in two months. Saadi also claimed a position of neutrality in the conflict and offered to mediate.[21]

On 11 September, Saadi fled to Niger and was allowed entrance on humanitarian grounds.[22][23] According to the government of Niger, they plan to detain Al-Saadi while determining what to do with him.[24] Al-Saadi had also been trying to assemble a team to transport him to Barbados or Venezuela.[25]

On 29 September, an Interpol red notice was issued for Saadi. Brigi Rafini, the prime minister of Niger said he would not allow Saadi to be extradited.[15]

On 11 November, Niger's President Mahamadou Issoufou said his government had decided to grant Al-Saadi asylum "on humanitarian grounds".[26]

On 7 December, the Mexican interior secretary said that Mexican intelligence agents broke up a smuggling ring attempting to bring Al-Saadi into Mexico under a false name.[27]

After the War[edit]

On March 5, 2014, Libya announced that Saadi had been extradited by Niger and was in Tripoli.[28]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ McElroy, Damien (10 March 2011). "Regime fears army revolt". The Sydney Morning Herald (London). Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  2. ^ "Interpol issues global alert on Gaddafi & 15 others". Al Arabiya News. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  3. ^ "Inside Gaddafi's inner circle". Al Jazeera. 27 February 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  4. ^ "Niger extradites Gaddafi's son Saadi to Tripoli, Libya says". Reuters. 6 March 2014. Retrieved 6 March 2014. 
  5. ^ "Gaddafi in Champions League". BBC News. 6 June 2000. 
  6. ^ Dorsey, James M. (5 June 2011). "Benghazi soccer exemplifies the battle between Arab autocrats and their detractors". Al Arabiya. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  7. ^ Whitaker, Brian (23 February 2011). "Muammar Gaddafi: method in his 'madness'". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  8. ^ White, Duncan (29 October 2011). "Jay Bothroyd puts good times with playboy Saadi Gaddafi, son of dead Libya tyrant Colonel Gaddafi, behind him". The National Post. Retrieved 30 October 2011. 
  9. ^ Shaw, Phil (2008). The Book of Football Quotations. Ebury Press. p. 32. ISBN 9780091923334. 
  10. ^ Bell, Stewart (29 October 2011). "The Ontario man who helped Muammar Gaddafi’s son flee Libya". The National Post (Toronto). Retrieved 29 October 2011. 
  11. ^ a b Owen, David (1 October 2006). "Al-Saadi Gaddafi: Libya calling". The Independent. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  12. ^ "Italian court tells Gaddafi son to pay huge hotel bill". BBC World News. 10 July 2010. Retrieved 12 July 2010. 
  13. ^ "The Gaddafi family tree". BBC News. 21 February 2011. 
  14. ^ a b "New York Times Kept Qaddafi's Son's Bisexuality Quiet". The Atlantic Wire. 16 September 2011. 
  15. ^ a b Farmer, Ben (29 September 2011). "Libya: Gaddafi mouthpiece caught 'fleeing dressed as a woman'". The Telegraph. Retrieved 1 October 2011. 
  16. ^ "Gay Porn Found During Raid on Gadhafi Home". The Advocate. 25 August 2011. 
  17. ^ "Saadi Gaddafi 'gave order to shoot' in Benghazi revolt". BBC. 21 March 2011. Retrieved 21 March 2011. 
  18. ^ Wendl, Karl (30 March 2011). "Gaddafi trickst Rebellen aus" [Gaddafi tricks with rebels]. OE24 (in German). Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  19. ^ "Gadhafi son offers to broker Libya cease-fire". CNN. 24 August 2011. Retrieved 4 September 2011. 
  20. ^ Ajbaili, Mustapha (31 August 2011). "Saadi Qaddafi tells Al Arabiya his father is ready to relinquish power". Al Arabiya. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  21. ^ "Gaddafi's son blames brother over speech". The Sydney Morning Herald. Agence France-Presse. 5 September 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  22. ^ "Gaddafi son found as NTC rallies forces". Al Jazeera. 11 September 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  23. ^ McMahon, Tamsin (31 October 2011). "Probe urged into how Ontario-based bodyguard helped Gaddafi’s son flee from Libya". The National Post (Toronto). Retrieved 31 October 2011. 
  24. ^ "Mon, 12 Sep 2011". Al Jazeera. Reuters. 12 September 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2011. 
  25. ^ Bell, Stewart (31 October 2011). "Ontario man offered contractors $1,000 a day to transport Gaddafi’s son". The National Post (Toronto). Retrieved 31 October 2011. 
  26. ^ Smith, David (11 November 2011). "Niger grants asylum to Saadi Gaddafi". The Guardian. 
  27. ^ "Mexico 'stops entry' of Libya's Saadi Gaddafi". BBC. 7 December 2011. Retrieved 19 January 2012. 
  28. ^ "Niger Extradites Gaddafi's Son Saadi: Libyan Government". New York Times. 5 March 2014. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 

External links[edit]