A month after the death of former Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi, his favourite son, Seif al-Islam, was captured in southern Libya by revolutionary fighters.
The one-time heir to the Libyan leadership, Seif al-Islam had been on the run until rebels found him Nov. 19 in a part of the Libyan desert that borders Niger, Mali and Algeria. The International Criminal Court is pressing Libya to bring him to trial in The Hague, where they insist he will be treated humanely and fairly.
After the popular uprising began in February, Moammar Gadhafi’s inner circle scattered in a number of directions. Here’s a look at what happened to the rest of the clan.
1. Killed during Libyan uprising
Having enrolled in the Technical University of Munich in 2006, sixth son Seif al-Arab spent the latter half of the decade keeping a reasonably low profile in Germany (a stint that nonetheless included a couple of brawls and a noise violation). Seif al-Arab returned to Libya once hostilities broke out in February, and was killed in an airstrike on his home in Tripoli on April 30.
Gadhafi’s youngest son, Khamis, led a fearsome army unit called the Khamis Brigade, and had been reported dead no less than three times during the seven-month uprising. It was finally confirmed that he died in fighting near Tripoli on Aug. 29.
Mutassim, Gadhafi’s fifth son, was a member of the Libyan army and the national security adviser from 2008 to 2011. Mutassim had an active role in fighting the 2011 insurgency, commanding military units in Brega, Tripoli and Sirte. On Oct. 21, Mutassim was captured in Sirte and killed by anti-government forces.
2. Hiding in Algeria
Once rebels took the capital of Tripoli in late August, Gadhafi’s wife, Safia Farkash, and three of their children and their families escaped to Algeria. Farkash, along with sons Muhammad Gadhafi and Hannibal Gadhafi and daughter Aisha Gadhafi, currently reside in an oceanfront compound in Algiers.
Muhammad, the ex-Libyan leader’s first son, once chaired Libya’s national telecommunications utility and the country’s Olympic committee. He allegedly surrendered to rebels in August, before escaping to Algeria on Aug. 29.
Hannibal, the volatile fourth son, was a consultant to a Libyan maritime transport company. He is better known for various dust-ups in Europe: he attacked three Italian policemen with a fire extinguisher in 2001; was detained in 2004 after speeding, while intoxicated, with his Porsche and traveling in the wrong direction on the Champs-Elysée in Paris; and in 2005, was given a four-month suspended prison sentence after beating his then girlfriend, now wife, Aline Skaf, in Paris. Hannibal and Aline were arrested in Geneva in 2008 for assaulting two of their staff members, an incident that curdled relations between Libya and Switzerland.
Aisha, a former UN goodwill ambassador, is a lawyer by trade, and was part of Saddam Hussein’s posthumous defense team in 2004. In June, Aisha filed lawsuits against NATO, alleging the multi-country force deliberately killed four Gadhafi relatives in Tripoli bombing raids in April.
On Aug. 30, Aisha is reported to have given birth to a daughter in the Algerian town of Djanet.
On Oct. 26, the family announced its intention to file a war crimes complaint against NATO with the International Criminal Court for the alliance's alleged role in Moammar Gadhafi’s death.
Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC) is demanding the extradition of Farkash and her three children, but Algeria has yet to recognize the NTC as Libya’s new government.
3. Detained in Niger
A former soccer player, Gadhafi’s third son, Saadi, fled to neighbouring Niger on Sept. 11. Once he got there, the Niger military intercepted him and flew him to the capital, Niamey, where he has been under house arrest ever since.
On Oct. 1, a government spokesman for Niger said that the NTC was welcome to question Saadi, but that Niger was not open to extraditing him at the moment.
4. Captured in the Libyan desert
Thought to be Gadhafi’s favourite son and once touted as a successor, Seif al-Islam held a diplomatic role in the Libyan regime. Like his father before his death, Seif al-Islam is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of crimes against humanity against the Libyan people.
Seif al-Islam’s ambassadorial duties and hobnobbing talent made him a fixture in London society — he was hosted at both Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, and still considers Tony Blair a "personal family friend."
There were many unconfirmed and erroneous claims of Seif al-Islam’s capture between late August and late October. Around the time of his father’s death came reports that Seif al-Islam had been seized by rebels in Sirte and Bani Walid. On Oct. 27, Al Arabiya News reported that he was in Libya’s southern desert, under the protection of South African mercenaries, and was asking the NTC for assurances of safe travel so that he could turn himself in to the International Criminal Court. Luis Moreno-Ocampo, Prosecutor of the ICC, reported on Oct. 28 that the ICC was in indirect negotiations with Seif al-Islam about his possible surrender for trial.
On Nov. 19, Seif al-Islam was found and detained in the town of Omari, dressed in the garb of a touareg nomad. Libyan authorities would like to try him inside the country, while the ICC is pressing Libya to bring him to trial in The Hague.
5. Safely back in Ukraine
Galyna Kolotnytska made international headlines last year when a WikiLeaks cable revealed that the Ukrainian nurse had been in Gadhafi’s employ for nearly a decade. The cable reported that the eccentric leader wouldn’t travel anywhere without her.
Kolotnytska returned to her native Ukraine at the outset of the Libyan uprising in February.