Obama ok’s $400K to Gadhafi-run Charities

WASHINGTON (CBS) The Obama Administration plans to give $400,000 in funding to a Libyan charity run by the Gadhafi family, and U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) wants the grant withdrawn.

The money would be divided between two foundations run by the family of Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi. A $200,000 share is set to go to the Gadhafi Development Foundation, which is run by Gadhafi's son, Saif, and another $200,000 are to go to Wa Attassimou, an organization run by Muammar Gadhafi's daughter, Aisha.

Kirk says the grants should be withdrawn in light of the recent return to Libya of Pan Am Flight 103 bomber Abdel Baset Megrahi. The terminally ill prisoner was released from in Scotland on compassionate grounds, and got a hero's welcome from Muammar Gadhafi and other Libyans upon his return.

Saif Gadhafi was involved in negotiating for Megrahi's release, and accompanied him back to Libya.

"Just weeks after the Gadhafi family celebrated the return of a terrorist responsible for the murders of 189 Americans, the U.S. taxpayer should not be asked to reward them with $400,000," Kirk wrote to the president. "For the sake of the victims' families who have endured so much pain these last few weeks, I ask you to withdraw your Administration's request."

The Gadhafi Development Foundation is described by the BBC as "a charity which tries to project a new and positive image of Libya."

The U.S. State Department has not issued a response to Kirk's request.



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