The retrial of
five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor accused of
infecting hundreds of Libyan children with HIV was postponed
for a second time on Tuesday to give lawyers more time
to prepare evidence.
"The trial is
postponed to June 20 and will resume with one hearing
per week to avoid tiring the defendants further," said
presiding judge Mahmoud Hawissa.
complained about the new delay, saying they had demanded
that the medics be released. "This trial has taken another
direction, and more than 7 1/2 years in detention is
enough," said defense lawyer Othmane Bizanti.
The retrial had
been postponed once already on May 11, with the judge
saying the lawyers lacked the proper papers.
States has long backed Bulgaria and the European Union
in saying that the medics jailed in Libya since 1999
are innocent. Around 50 of the children have died, and
the case has fueled outrage among the families of the
Bulgaria and its
allies say the medics were tortured into confessing, and
global AIDS experts say the outbreak at the Benghazi
hospital where they worked first happened before they