Algeria: Gadhafi’s daughter gives birth
Wednesday, August 31, 2011
ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) — Hunted throughout her homeland and forced to flee into exile across a dangerous desert border, the daughter of ousted Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi paused somewhere in the Sahara to have a baby.
The dramatic birth of Gadhafi’s granddaughter after her mother and other relatives escaped Libyan territory into Algeria, lends a human dimension to the dictator’s downfall and the ongoing mystery of his whereabouts.
The birth in exile was disclosed by the Algerian Health Ministry on Tuesday.
Algeria’s U.N. Ambassador Mourad Benmehidi said in a letter to the Security Council obtained by the Associated Press that at 8:45 a.m. local time Monday two vehicles, a bus and a Mercedes entered Algerian territory from Libya carrying Safiya Gadhafi, her daughter Aisha, sons Hannibal and Mohammed, and their children. Benmehidi said one child “was born the same day at the border without medical assistance.”
The Health Ministry earlier said Aisha Gadhafi gave birth to a girl on Tuesday. It was not immediately clear which day was correct.
Benmehidi said the country allowed them to enter the country for “humanitarian considerations.” Algerian news reports had said Aisha’s pregnancy was one reason for Algeria’s controversial decision to take the family in.
An Algerian newspaper reported the exiles, who also included an unknown number of Gadhafi’s grandchildren by his eight children, had waited 12 hours to receive authorization to cross the Algerian border from President Abdelaziz Bouteflika — while Aisha was in labor.
The whole party is now wanted by Libya’s new rulers. Libya’s interim government criticized Algeria’s decision to take in Gadhafi’s fleeing wife and children, and demanded Algiers hand them over for trial in Libya.