Libyan al-Qaeda suspect reaches US

The Libyan man who was seized earlier this month in a US raid in Tripoli has been transferred to the US to face charges in New York.

Officials said Abu Anas al-Liby, whose real name is Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, had been questioned on board a navy ship while travelling to the US.

He is accused of links with al-Qaeda and involvement in the 1998 bombings of US embassies in East Africa.

Mr Liby was indicted by a New York grand jury in 2000.

The US attorney for the southern district of New York, Preet Bharara,said in a statement that Mr Liby was transferred to law enforcement custody at the weekend.

The 49-year-old was likely to be presented before a judicial officer on Tuesday, he added.’Appropriate target’

There has been anger in Libya over the US commando raid on 5 October which seized the senior al-Qaeda suspect. Many saw the raid as a breach of Libyan sovereignty.

US Secretary of State John Kerry has defended the capture of Mr Liby, calling him a “legal and appropriate target”.

The Libya government has demanded an explanation for the raid from the US. Its justice minister summoned the US ambassador to the country for questioning last week.

Libyan Prime Minister Ali Zeidan said Libya was “keen on prosecuting any Libyan citizen inside Libya”. Mr Zeidan was briefly held captive by militiamen several days after the raid but the motive for the abduction remains unclear.

Intelligence officials interrogated Mr Liby for a week after his capture aboard the USS San Antonio in the Mediterranean, according to reports.

Mr Liby’s sons have claimed that Libyans were involved in his kidnap, which Tripoli denies.

Most wanted

The 1998 attacks on the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania killed more than 220 people.

Mr Liby had been on the FBI’s most wanted list for more than a decade, with a $5m (¬£3.1m) bounty on his head.

The charges against him include discussing a possible al-Qaeda attack against the US embassy in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, in retaliation for the American military intervention in Somalia.

The former computer programmer is also alleged to have carried out “visual and photographic surveillance” of the building in 1993 and “reviewed files” concerning possible attacks on Western interests in East Africa.

A second US commando raid on 5 October failed to capture its target – Abdukadir Mohamed Abdukadir, a Kenyan al-Shabab commander also known as Ikrima.

The al-Shabab militant group says it carried out last month’s attack on the Westgate shopping centre in Nairobi, which left at least 67 people dead.