The son of late Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi, registered on Sunday as a presidential candidate, according to media reports citing an unnamed official from the electoral commission. Saif al-Islam al-Gadhafi has not been seen in public for most of the last decade. The 49-year-old dictator’s son played a major role in shaping policy before the 2011 NATO-backed uprising that deposed his father.
Libya is set to hold its first democratic elections since Moammar Gadhafi was deposed a decade ago on December 24, though it is still not clear that the elections will be held as scheduled. Meanwhile, Gadhafi gave an interview to The New York Times earlier this year but has yet to make a pubic appearance and speak directly to the Libyan people. Observers do not believe he could be the electoral front runner. Saif al-Islam al-Gadhafi was tried in absentia in 2015 by a Tripoli court though he appeared at the trial via video link from Zintan, where he was seized and held by opposition fighters in October 2011. That court sentenced him to death for war crimes, including killing protesters during the 2011 revolt, meaning that he could be arrested if he appears in public in Tripoli. He is also wanted by the International Criminal Court.