TUNIS, Tunisia – Former interpreter and trusted aide of Muammar Gaddafi, Moftah Missouri, revealed that the Libyan leader donated €20 million ($24.5m) to former French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s election campaign, speaking from Tunis on Thursday.
“In 2005, France’s then Minister of Interior, Nicolas Sarkozy, visited Libya. He met with his Libyan counterpart, and then at the end of the visit met with the leader of the Libyan revolution in Bab al-Azizia. The meeting lasted about 45 minutes. Minister Sarkozy said that he is going to run for the presidency in 2007. The Libyan leader replied that it was good news and it would be good if a friend of Libya and his personal friend would become the President of France. Gaddafi promised Sarkozy all the support and help,” Moftah Missouri revealed.
“After Sarkozy announced his presidential ambitions, I heard that representatives of Sarkozy’s election headquarters met with Libyan officials. They prepared a document during this meeting. In this document they asked the Libyan leadership to allocate 50 million euros as Libyan support for the presidential election campaign of Sarkozy,” Missouri continued.
“This document was sent to then Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa, and he forwarded it to the Libyan leader’s office. The document was called Bashir Saleh. This man was one of the negotiators from the Libyan side. The document was handed over to the Libyan leader, who ordered to reduce the amount to 20 million [euros],” he said. “Personally, I was not present during the money transfer procedure. But there is a witness who admitted that he had transferred this money. This witness is called Ziad Takieddine. He was also one of the negotiators in the preparation of the document.”
“Gaddafi repeatedly talked during televised interviews, admitting this fact [the fact of transferring money to representatives of Sarkozy’s election headquarters]. Gaddafi talked about this with me personally as well. He told me once: ‘I donated 20 million’,” Missouri continued to explain.
“Gaddafi had his own presidential fund. I can’t remember any instance when a transfer from [Gaddafi’s fund] was made through a bank. I know there is a ‘suitcase option’ for those requesting aid. This applies not only to Libya, but also to other states that provide assistance. Regarding [Libyan] Central or other banks, they did not make bank transfers to Sarkozy’s headquarters from the territory of Libya,” he concluded.