A Libyan delegation visited Beirut this week to reopen talks with Lebanese officials on the fate of a prominent Lebanese cleric who has been missing for decades, and on the release of Muammar Gaddafi's son who has been held in Lebanon for years.
The talks were aimed at reactivating a dormant agreement between Lebanon and Libya, struck in 2014, for cooperation in the probe of the 1978 disappearance of Shiite cleric Mussa al-Sadr, judicial and security officials said.
The fate of the cleric has been a long-standing sore point in Lebanon, as his family believes he may still be alive in a Libyan prison, though most Lebanese presume al-Sadr, who would be 94 now, is dead.
Muammar Gaddafi's son Hannibali has been held in Lebanon since 2015 after he was kidnapped from neighboring Syria, where he had been living as a political refugee. He was abducted by Lebanese militants demanding information about the fate of al-Sadr.
Al-Sadr and his two companions, Mohammed Yaqoub and Abbas Badreddin, went missing in August 1978 after an official visit to the Libyan capital, Tripoli.
Al-Sadr was scheduled to meet with officials from the government of Muammar Gaddafi during the visit.
The three were never seen or heard from again and their fate is still unknown even after the overthrow of the Gaddafi regime in 2011.
A judiciary source in Lebanon told Ash-Sharq daily on Friday that the Libyan delegation held talks with the Lebanese justice minister and head of the committee pursuing the case of al-Sadr’s disappearance.
"There were candid and positive negotiations in this meeting and the Libyan side pledged to answer to letters from Lebanon demanding information from 13 security and political officials from the Gaddafi regime," the source said.
The source added that Lebanon’s general prosecutor believes that Hannibal Gaddafi knows about the whereabouts of Imam Musa Sadr.