A Libyan high court is due to decide whether five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor, condemned to death for infecting children with HIV, can be reprieved. The six have requested a pardon or a lesser sentence after the EU made an agreement with the families of the children, 56 of whom have died, to pay them 700,000 Euros each. Last week the Libyan supreme court upheld the death penalty. Their lawyers have always maintained their innocence insisting bad hospital hygiene was at fault. The children’s families celebrated in court but behind the scenes were agreeing the compensation deal for 460 victims, and confirming they would not be against a reprieve.
Now the Supreme Judicial Council has the power to spare their lives. The families of the nurses, back in Bulgaria, have never given up hope of seeing their loved ones come home. The medics, who maintain they were tortured into confessions, have also promised not to sue the Libyan authorities.