Deal with Libyan families may buy freedom for Bulgarian medics

The families of 438 children infected with HIV have reached an agreement with the Libyan government on compensation, potentially opening the way for the release of five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor who has been granted Bulgarian citizenship. The six medics were sentenced to death after a local court found them guilty of deliberately infecting the children. Libya’s Supreme Court upheld the sentences last week. According to unofficial reports, the families have agreed to a compensation package of more than $400m, or roughly $1m per child.A lawyer for the families said that under the new deal they will no longer demand the execution of the medics, allowing Libya’s Supreme Judicial Council to commute the sentences. Once this is done, the medics could be transferred to Bulgaria under an existing bilateral extradition agreement. The Council is expected to discuss the case Monday.

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