Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Libya...another reason........or is it.

The gent in the photo is President Merz of Switzerland.
He flew to Libya as Al-Megrahi was being released.

Why you ask.

Well please read on.

In July 2008 Swiss police arrested Colonel Gaddafi’s son Hannibal and pregnant daughter-in-law in a Geneva hotel suite after receiving reports that they had abused their two servants. Hannibal Gaddafi, 33, and his wife, Aline, spent two nights in custody and left Switzerland after being released on bail.

The Gaddafi family were furious and reprisals were swift. Two days later Mr Goeldi, a director of the Swiss engineering company ABB, was arrested at his Tripoli home, as was Rachid Hamdani, another Swiss citizen. Both were imprisoned for alleged breaches of immigration rules. They were released ten days later but banned from leaving Libya. The Swiss media described them as hostages and Mr Goeldi sought refuge in the Swiss Embassy. In the past year Libya has imposed trade sanctions, stopped Swiss flights to Tripoli, withdrawn more than $5 billion from Swiss banks and cut the crude oil exports that provide half of Switzerland’s oil.

The new Swiss Ambassador was denied a visa. Sources said that Mr Goeldi was left almost alone in the embassy, with ABB employees bringing him food.

Last September Hannibal Gaddafi’s servants withdrew their complaint after agreeing a financial settlement but Swiss diplomatic efforts to placate Libya bore no fruit. In April Hannibal Gaddafi, his wife and the Libyan state filed a civil lawsuit against the Geneva authorities in a Geneva court.

Last Thursday, as al-Megrahi was returning from Scotland, President Merz of Switzerland flew to Tripoli and delivered an “official and public apology for the unjustified and unnecessary arrests”. He promised to have Hannibal Gaddafi’s arrest investigated by an arbitration panel. Libya promised to restore normal relations. Mr Goeldi and Mr Hamdani should soon be on their way home.

Libyan newspapers proclaimed a double triumph — and the humiliated Swiss Government was, as with Scotland’s, excoriated at home. “In this crisis Switzerland loses more than honour. The country has slowly taken stock of its powerlessness,” said the Swiss newspaper Le Temps.

Expats who have been finding it difficult to get their visas renewed hope that, with al-Megrahi’s release, the wheels of bureaucracy will turn more easily.

Now it is reported in the Times that how can I put this........lets say British and other Western expatriates living in Libya were warned in April that they faced serious repercussions if the Lockerbie bomber died in his Scottish prison.

“Word went out that there could be reprisals . . . . We were told not to go into the centre of Tripoli,” said one of the thousands of Westerners who are helping to develop Libya’s oil and gas fields. “Everybody went ‘eek!’. It’s so unpredictable here. You don’t know what’s going to happen. It could be something or it could be nothing.”

The expats were not told what the reprisals might be were Abdul Baset Ali al-Megrahi to die in Scotland, but the story Max Goeldi may point a finger????.

So as reported the Libyans managed to cut up rough with the Swiss.
The Swiss cave in, but 60% of Swiss oil comes from Libya.
Mandleson meets "Mad Dog's" son in Corfu.
Scottish parliament release al-Megrahi.
Nothing to do with oil..............Scottish descision only.
Visa granted willy nilly for oil workers from now on.

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