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Brussels, 11 July 2007

Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner on the ruling of the Libyan court on Bulgarian nurses case

Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, Benita Ferrero-Waldner reacted to the ruling of the Libyan Supreme Court regarding the case of the Bulgarian nurses and the Palestinian doctors as follows:

"I deeply regret the verdict of the Supreme Court confirming the death sentence for the Bulgarian nurses and the Palestinian doctor.

However, I trust that the matter will now immediately be referred to a higher authority, the Supreme Judicial Council.

I firmly hope that clemency will be granted to the medical staff. This should be done in the same spirit of mutual respect and humanitarian compassion which characterised the European response to the plight of the Benghazi children and their families.

At the same time I have heard about the positive announcement of the Gadhafi Foundation and the families. I am waiting to hear the details. I am in close contact with the Foundation and the authorities through my people on the ground. 

I would like to renew our commitment to alleviate the suffering of the children infected with HIV/AIDS and their families, whose lives have been terribly affected by this disease. We will keep our promise of continued support for the medical treatment of the Benghazi children and for the Benghazi hospital.

Through the Action Plan for Benghazi we have made considerable efforts to assist the Libyan government in improving the health care for patients with HIV/AIDS."

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