It was a happy end to an eight year ordeal. The Bulgarian nurses and their Palesetinian doctor collegue arrived at Sofia airport to a presidential pardon, and true freedom at last. From Paris, President Nicolas Sarkozy insisted neither France nor Europe had paid Libya to release the group. However his wife Cecilia made a highly-public visit to Libya with the EU’s External Relations Commissioner, Benita Ferrero-Waldner, to bring the group back on the French presidential jet. The six were accused of infecting hundreds of Libyan children with HIV. Western medical experts testified that the outbreaks started before the six arrived in Libya. Even so they were found guilty, and sentenced to death, which was commuted to life imprisonment last week. Finally they were allowed to fly home. Their freedom ends what critics of Libya call a human rights scandal. It also paves the way for closer links between Tripoli and Europe.
Bulgarian medics return to a Presidential pardon.