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Libya to free 131 political prisoners, says Gaddafi son

[JURIST] An influential son of Libyan leader Colonel Muhamar Gaddaffi [BBC profile] has said that the Libyan government will soon free 131 political prisoners, and will also provide compensation to citizens who had their assets, properties or homes confiscated in the 1970s at the time of Gaddaffi's so-called "Green Revolution." The reform-minded, UK-educated second-eldest of seven Gaddaffi sons, Saif al-Islam [Independent profile] is considered a likely successor to his father and currently heads the Gaddafi Charity Foundation [official website], an organization dedicated to improving Libya's rights record and international image. Libya has taken a number of high-profile diplomatic and political initiatives in recent years - including the abandonment of weapons of mass destruction [BBC report] - as part of a broader effort to reach a rapprochement with the West and end Libya's reputation as a "rogue nation" supporting international terrorism. In April 2004 Amnesty International issued a scathing report on Libyan human rights [AI text] and called on the government to improve its conduct. Reuters has more.

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