LSE director quits over Libya links

Head of London School of Economics resigns after university's financial ties to the ruling Gaddafi family were exposed

    Organisations with links to the embattled Libyan regime have come increasingly under the spotlight since the uprising began in the North African country.

    In the UK, the head of the prestigious London School of Economics (LSE) has resigned after it was disclosed that the university accepted multi-million dollar donations from former student Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, the son of the Libyan leader, who earned a PhD at the school.

    "I decided that I would not stay on, because the reputation of the school is my responsibility and it has ... been damaged and I think I need o take responsibility for that", Sir Howard Davies told the BBC.

    The school has commissioned an independent inquiry into the financial dealings with Libya, including a $3.6m contract to train Libyan officials in leadership skills, a $2.4m donation from Saif Gaddafi's charitable foundation, and $37,000 from the same foundation for academics to travel to Libya.

    The LSE students' union, which had occupied Sir Davies' office in protest of the Libyan links, welcomed his resignation, but some students blamed his demise on circumstances rather than judgement.

    The LSE has already announced it is investigating claims that Saif Gaddafi plagiarised his PhD dissertation, which he was awarded in 2008.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


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