French 'weapons dealer' shot in Libya

2012-01-09 22:06

Paris - The French foreign ministry on Monday confirmed that a French citizen had been shot dead in the Libyan capital Tripoli, but provided no further details.

Security sources in Tripoli told AFP on Sunday that a former French serviceman had been found shot dead in his flat in the centre of the capital.

"We confirm a French citizen was shot dead in Tripoli on Saturday, January 7," the French foreign ministry said in a statement.

"We are in close contact with the Libyan authorities so that all light can be shed on the circumstances of this crime and so that those responsible can be brought to justice," it said.

Sources close to the investigation said the victim was named Hugues de Samie, was 60 and had a long military career.

French media reported that de Samie, a former Foreign Legionaire, left the military in the mid-2000s and had worked in Libya since 2008 for Construction Mecanique de Normandie (CMN), a French shipyard.

He had reportedly been involved in attempts to sell naval patrol boats to Muammar Gaddafi's regime and to win contracts to modernise Libyan frigates bought in the 1970s.


Libyan authorities have arrested a suspect in the killing of de Samie in Tripoli, the official LANA news agency reported late on Monday, saying the murder had no political motives.

LANA, citing the interior ministry, said Mohammed al-Kurdi, 28, had been arrested as the "suspected killer" for the murder of Hugues de Samie by sources close to the investigation.

"The [arrested] criminal is a drug addict and his motive was theft. There are no political motives," said the news agency.

"The interior ministry said there were no political motives behind the murder of the French citizen in Zawiet al-Dahmani neighbourhood of Tripoli," it added.

Read more on:    france  |  libya  |  north africa

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