The Head of the Libyan American Alliance, Esam Omeish, has confirmed that Khalifa Haftar’s lawyers – Levin and Ungvarsky – have decided to quit their job as the defense team for the warlord for the lawsuits filed in the US, saying they haven’t heard from Haftar in a while.
Omeish said this step could be related to the fact that the attorneys were unable to convince the court that Haftar had a head of state immunity in Libya, thus; losing hope that they could help the warlord get political immunity or an acquittal sentence in the lawsuits against him.
In the meantime, the Libyan American Alliance and the attorneys of the families of Haftar war crimes’ victims said the massive number of documented crimes committed by Haftar is sufficient for a US court ruling against him, adding that this stance has led to the withdrawal of Haftar’s attorneys, who have believed they won’t be able to contest all the evidence against him and his militias.
Haftar is facing lawsuits for killing civilians, causing terror and displacement among civilian communities as well as carrying attacks on hospitals, education institutions and civilian residential areas. The lawsuits argue that Haftar has a US citizenship and thus; he is an American who shall be bound by US laws.
Haftar contracted a team of attorneys from New York in August 2020 to represent him at the Virginia District Court, which accepted the lawsuits filed by nine Libyan-American nationals for war crimes committed during Haftar’s aggression on Tripoli.