Egypt denies Qadhafi cousin drafts Egyptian mercenaries

Egypt's ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) denied media reports claiming that Ahmed Qadhaf al-Dam, cousin to the beleaguered Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi, has been drafting Egyptian mercenaries.

In a statement on Sunday, the SCAF said it had allowed Qadhaf al-Dam to stay in Egypt on condition that he does not practice any political activity that may harm the country's interests.

The military council also stressed that it will not intervene in Libya's internal affairs and is anxious about its stability. It urged media outlets to report accurately in order to "preserve ties with Arab brothers during the present critical stage."

On Sunday, the chairman of the Libyan National Transitional Council, Mustafa Abdul Jalil, accused Qadhaf al-Dam of selling Libyan assets, hiring young Egyptian mercenaries and transporting them to eastern Libya to suppress the rebellion, and funding Qadhafi's forces.

Abdul Jalil said he asked the SCAF and the Egyptian cabinet to intervene. He mentioned that 15 Egyptians have been detained east of Libya, but did not give more details.

Earlier media reports had said Qadhaf al-Dam defected from Qadhafi's regime in February, objecting to the Libyan leader's bloody campaign against civilans protesting against his rule.

Qadhaf al-Dam, who previously served as a coordinator for Egyptian-Libyan relations, said in a statement on Sunday that he was not party to the current conflict and had severed all official links to the Libyan regime on 25 February.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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