(BBC) Militias from the Libyan city of Misrata are “terrorising” displaced residents of the town of Tawargha over their alleged loyalty to Muammar Gaddafi, says a rights group.
The entire town, once home to 30,000 people, has been abandoned, said US-based Human Rights Watch (HRW).
Parts have been ransacked and burnt and residents told not to return, it said.
The ruling NTC said it has ordered its forces not to loot and that an inquiry would be held in case of wrongdoing.
“We are in complete harmony. If there has been anything outside the law, there will be an investigation,” said Deputy Defence Minister Fawzi Abu Katif.
HRW said it had reports of militiamen shooting unarmed Tawarghans and of arbitrary arrests and beatings, some of them leading to deaths, HRW said.
The militias are accusing the Gaddafi loyalists in Tawargha of committing atrocities, such as murder and rape, alongside Gaddafi forces in Misrata.
The majority of the town’s residents are non-Arab Libyans, many of them descendants of African slaves.
“Revenge against the people from Tawargha, whatever the accusations against them, undermines the goal of the Libyan revolution,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, HRW’s Middle East and North Africa director.
“In the new Libya, Tawarghans accused of wrongdoing should be prosecuted based on the law, not subject to vigilante justice,” she added.
HRW says its conclusions were based on the testimonies of dozens of people across the country.
Pro-Gaddafi forces used Tawargha as a base for attacks on Misrata when they besieged the city during the Libyan uprising.
The anti-Gaddafi militia fought their way out and began an advance on the Libyan capital, Tripoli, back in August.
(Activist Post) All hail humanitarian war. Regime change can be a bitch. Start with sanctions because of ‘humanitarian’ reasons. If they don’t work, arm ragtag mercenaries and implement a ‘no-fly zone’ through an international body. If the rebels can’t hunt down the defunct leader, then just bomb the hell out the country until a bloody carcass vaguely resembling the leader turns up. Then claim that the humanitarian intervention was a wild success. PS: Make sure you destroy enough of the infrastructure to secure a huge IMF bondage loan for reconstruction.
The before and after picture of Libya below shows what the U.S./NATO means by a humanitarian war:
(ATN) Since the start of the war launched by NATO against Quaddafi in Lybia, many have raised the issue of ‘is this a war for control of oil’. Another issue has also came to the surface that should demand more attention, the water supply. Some may not know that Libya, Egypt, Sudan, and Chad sit above a very large aquifer(see photo below). Which for the past 26 years, Quaddafi has been constructing the “Great Manmade River pipeline” spending around $20 billion on in a attempt to turn the dessert into farmland (not to defend Quaddafi’s Dictatorship). Also something Egypt was attempting to do.
Searing sand and gravel deserts, occasionally interrupted by uplifted massifs of pure bedrock, stretch from Egypt to Algeria in Northern Africa. Beneath the Sahara lie “three major aquifers, strata of saturated sandstones and limestones…The easternmost of these, extending over two million square kilometers, underlies all of Egypt west of the Nile, all of eastern Libya, and much of northern Chad and Sudan, and contains 375,000 cubic kilometers of water—the equivalent of 3750 years of Nile River flow. It is called the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System (NSAS).” (8)
Since the reason given for the war has been to help out the people of Libya, you would think that this would be something that NATO would try to protect. This was not the case. The man made river actually was a target for NATO, cutting off fresh water supply to manny Libyans. In return leaving libyan farmers without water to produce food for their country and fresh drinking water.
This should raise questions about the oil titains for a simple reason. The oil titains have been buying up water supplies around the world. The two most known is the Bush’s purchase of a 100,000 acres in Paraguay that sits above the Guarani Aquifer, and T. Boone Pickens which has so far purchased 200,000 acres that sits above the Ogallala Aquifer. Now ask yourself what is this war truly over.
(MY FOX HOUSTON) A U.S. Predator drone, along with a French fighter jet, fired on the convoy said to be carrying Muammar Qaddafi in the moments before his death, a U.S. defense official told Fox News on Thursday.
The official said the drone and French jet fired on a “large convoy” leaving Qaddafi’s hometown of Sirte. A French defense official earlier said about 80 vehicles were in the convoy — the official said the strike did not destroy the convoy but that fighters on the ground afterward intercepted the vehicle carrying Qaddafi.
The president, speaking in the Rose Garden, announced that Libyans have “won their revolution.”
“Today we can definitively say that the Qaddafi regime has come to an end,” he said.
Qaddafi died of wounds suffered during his capture near Sirte, according to a spokesman for the National Transitional Council in Libya.
(AP) Moammar Gadhafi, Libya’s dictator for 42 years until he was ousted in an uprising-turned-civil war, was killed Thursday as revolutionary fighters overwhelmed his hometown of Sirte and captured the last major bastion of resistance two months after his regime fell.
Interim government officials said one of Gadhafi’s sons, his former national security adviser Muatassim, also was killed in Sirte, and another, one-time heir apparent Seif al-Islam, was wounded and captured.
The 69-year-old Gadhafi is the first leader to be killed in the Arab Spring wave of popular uprisings that swept the Middle East, demanding the end of autocratic rulers and the establishment of greater democracy.
“We have been waiting for this moment for a long time. Moammar Gadhafi has been killed,” Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril told a news conference in the capital of Tripoli.
His death decisively ends a regime that had turned Libya into an international pariah and ran the oil-rich nation by the whim and brutality of its notoriously eccentric leader.
Libya stands on the cusp of a new era, but its turmoil may not be over. The former rebels who now rule are disorganized and face rebuilding a country virtually without institutions by Gadhafi’s design. They have already shown signs of infighting, with divisions between geographical areas and Islamist and more secular ideologies.
President Barack Obama told the Libyan people: “You have won your revolution,”
Although the U.S. briefly led the NATO bombing campaign in Libya that sealed Gadhafi’s fate, Washington later took a secondary role to its allies. Britain and France said they hoped that his death would lead to a more democratic Libya.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy said it would allow Libyans “to free themselves from the dictatorial and violent regime.”
There were confusing reports of Gadhafi’s capture and death, and questions remained over exactly how he was killed.
Arab broadcasters showed graphic images of the balding, goateed Gadhafi – wounded, with a bloodied face and shirt – but alive.
Later video showed fighters rolling Gadhafi’s lifeless body over on the pavement, stripped to the waist and a pool of blood under his head.
While he was still alive, the fighters drove him around lying on the hood of a truck, perhaps to parade him in public. One fighter held him down, pressing on his thigh with a pair of shoes in a show of contempt.
Standing upright, he is shoved along a Sirte road by fighters who chanted “God is great.”
Gadhafi appears to struggle against them, stumbling and shouting as the fighters push him onto the hood of a pickup truck.
“We want him alive. We want him alive,” one man shouted before Gadhafi is dragged away, some fighters pulling his hair, toward an ambulance.
Most accounts agreed Gadhafi had been holed up with heavily armed supporters in the last few buildings held by regime loyalists in the Mediterranean coastal town, furiously battling revolutionary fighters. The battle for Sirte has been raging for more than a month.
At one point, a convoy tried to flee and was hit by NATO airstrikes, carried out by French warplanes. France’s Defense Minister Gerard Longuet said the 80-vehicle convoy was carrying Gadhafi and was trying to escape the city. The strikes stopped the convoy but did not destroy it, and then revolutionary fighters moved in on the vehicle carrying Gadhafi.
One fighter who said he was at the battle told AP Television News that the final fight took place at an opulent compound. Adel Busamir said the convoy tried to break out but after being hit, it turned back and re-entered the compound. Several hundred fighters attacked.
“We found him there,” Busamir said of Gadhafi. “We saw them beating him (Gadhafi) and someone shot him with a 9mm pistol … then they took him away.”
Military spokesman Col. Ahmed Bani in Tripoli told Al-Jazeera TV that a wounded Gadhafi “tried to resist (revolutionary forces) so they took him down.”
Fathi Bashaga, spokesman for the Misrata military council, whose forces were involved in the battle, said fighters encircled the convoy and exchanged fire. In one vehicle, they found Gadhafi, wounded in the neck, and took him to an ambulance. “What do you want?” Gadhafi asked the approaching revolutionaries, Bashaga said, citing witnesses.
Gadhafi bled to death from his wounds a half-hour later, he said. Fighters said he died in the ambulance en route to Misrata, 120 miles from Sirte.
Abdel-Jalil Abdel-Aziz, a doctor who accompanied the body in the ambulance and examined it, said Gadhafi died from two bullet wounds – to the head and chest.
“You can’t imagine my happiness today. I can’t describe my happiness,” he told The Associated Press. “The tyranny is gone. Now the Libyan people can rest.”
Amnesty International urged the revolutionary fighters to report the full facts of how Gadhafi died, saying all members of the former regime should be treated humanely. The London-based rights group said it was essential to conduct “a full, independent and impartial inquiry to establish the circumstances of Col. Gadhafi’s death.”
Later, Gadhafi’s body was paraded through the streets of Misrata on top of a vehicle surrounded by a large crowd chanting, “The blood of the martyrs will not go in vain,” according to footage aired on Al-Arabiya television. The fighters who killed Gadhafi are believed to have come from Misrata, a city that suffered a brutal weeks-long siege by Gadhafi’s forces during the eight-month civil war.
Celebratory gunfire and cries of “God is great” rang out across Tripoli. Motorists honked and people hugged each other. In Sirte, the ecstatic former rebels celebrated the city’s fall after weeks of fighting by firing endless rounds into the sky, pumping their guns, knives and even a meat cleaver in the air and singing the national anthem.
“We would have wanted him alive for trial. But personally, I think it is better he died,” Bashaga said.
The capture of Sirte, the death of Gadhafi, and the death and capture of his two most powerful sons, gives the transitional leaders confidence to declare the entire country “liberated.”
It rules out a scenario some had feared – that Gadhafi might flee deep into Libya’s southern deserts and lead a resistance campaign.
Information Minister Mahmoud Shammam told AP that Muatassim Gadhafi was killed in Sirte. Abdel-Aziz, the doctor who accompanied Gadhafi’s body in the ambulance, said Muatassim was shot in the chest.
The justice minister said Gadhafi’s son and one-time heir apparent, Seif al-Islam, had been wounded in the leg and was being held in a hospital in the city of Zlitan, northwest of Sirte.
The justice minister said Gadhafi’s son Seif al-Islam, seen by many as his successor, had been wounded in the leg and was being held in a hospital in the city of Zlitan, northwest of Sirte. Shammam said Seif was captured in Sirte.
Following the fall of Tripoli on Aug. 21, Gadhafi loyalists mounted fierce resistance in several areas, including Sirte, preventing Libya’s new leaders from declaring full victory. Earlier this week, revolutionary fighters gained control of one stronghold, Bani Walid.
By Tuesday, fighters said they had squeezed Gadhafi’s forces in Sirte into a residential area of about 700 square yards but were still coming under heavy fire from surrounding buildings.
In an illustration of how heavy the fighting has been, it took the anti-Gadhafi fighters two days to capture a single residential building.
Reporters watched as the final assault began around 8 a.m. Thursday and ended about 90 minutes later. Just before the battle, about five carloads of Gadhafi loyalists tried to flee the enclave down the coastal highway that leads out of the city. But they were met by gunfire from the revolutionaries, who killed at least 20 of them.
Col. Roland Lavoie, spokesman for NATO’s operational headquarters in Naples, Italy, said the alliance’s aircraft struck two vehicles of pro-Gadhafi forces “which were part of a larger group maneuvering in the vicinity of Sirte.”
After the battle, revolutionaries began searching homes and buildings looking for any hiding Gadhafi fighters. At least 16 were captured, along with cases of ammunition and trucks loaded with weapons. Reporters saw revolutionaries beating captured Gadhafi men in the back of trucks and officers intervening to stop them.
The fighters looking like the same ragtag force that started the uprising jumped up and down with joy and flashed V-for-victory signs. Some burned the green Gadhafi flag, then stepped on it with their boots.
They chanted “God is great” while one fighter climbed a traffic light pole to unfurl the revolution’s flag, which he first kissed. Discarded military uniforms of Gadhafi’s fighters littered the streets. One revolutionary fighter waved a silver trophy in the air while another held up a box of firecrackers, then set them off.
“Our forces control the last neighborhood in Sirte,” Hassan Draoua, a member of Libya’s interim National Transitional Council, told the AP in Tripoli. “The city has been liberated.”
(YAHOO NEWS) A woman and her family were shot by Libyan rebel fighters in a deadly attack because their last name was Gaddafi, it has been reported.
Mother-of-three Afaf Gaddafi was attempting to flee the war-torn country with her children and other family members over fears that their surname would land them in trouble.
Mistaken for Gaddafi loyalists, rebel fighters opened fire at them near an airport – killing the couple’s two daughters Yam, 20 months, and Aden, three weeks, as well as Afaf’s mother and sister.
Afaf Gaddafi and her three-year-old son Ahmed, who has no links to Muammar Gaddafi other than sharing a name, survived the attack.
After realising the mix-up, soldiers from Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC) escorted the family to hospital, but four of the six victims could not be saved.
Afaf lost her eye in the shooting and husband Essam Arara hopes that she can now receive specialist treatment in the UK.
London School of Economics graduate Mr Arara, who was living in Britain at the time of the shootings, told the London Evening Standard: “None of them are even related to Muammar Gaddafi – it is just a surname given to many thousands of members of his tribe.
“But my wife and all our relatives were afraid that they could immediately be subjected to revenge attacks just because of their names. So they decided to flee to a safer place.
“If their names had not been Gaddafi they would have stayed at home and all be alive today.”
Gaddafi is a common surname in the North African country indicating that the person is part of the Gaddadfa tribe.
Mr Arara, 36, was arranging for the family to join him in Britain. He said: “After what my wife and son have been through they cannot face living in Libya. Britain is our only chance for a decent future.”
Libya’s National Transitional Council was unable to comment in time for publication.
(Martin Iqbal) In a truly stunning display of dishonesty, the BBC has reported, citing no evidence to back its claim, that a mass grave containing over 1,200 bodies has been found in Tripoli’s Abu Salim prison complex. The BBC attempts to tie this ‘finding’ to the equally concocted ‘Abu Salim prison massacre’, as it claims that the bodies are those of the inmates supposedly killed in 1996.
In a piece posted today after a NTC news conference, the BBC uses the headline: “More than 1,200 bodies found in Tripoli mass grave“. Categorically, absolutely, unequivocally, this is an out-and-out lie; 1,200 bodies have not been found. Not a single body has been found. In fact, no excavation has been performed, and no more than ‘several bone fragments’ have been discovered, according to the NTC.
This is revealed to the reader within the BBC’s own concocted report in the paragraphs that follow (emphasis mine):
A mass grave believed to contain up to 1,270 bodies has been found in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, says the National Transitional Council (NTC).
The remains are thought to be those of inmates who were killed by security forces in 1996 in the Abu Salim prison.
Excavation at the site is expected to start soon.
Several bone fragments and pieces of clothing have already been found in the top soil.
While the unelected, illegitimate terror council known as the NTC claims to have found merely ‘several bone fragments‘, the BBC claims that 1,200 bodies have been found in its deliberately misleading headline.
Even this weak slew of lies from the BBC exposes the fragile nature of the ‘Abu Salim massacre’ propaganda, as it refers to the evidential basis of the event (emphasis mine):
A few eyewitnesses have talked about the fact they were killed in their jail cells by grenades and sustained gunfire after a protest.
Officials in the new government say they will need foreign forensic help to determine exactly what happened there.
The BBC’s report contains testimony from a ‘Sami Assadi’, who claims to have lost two brothers in the incident.
“Mixed feelings really. We are all happy because this revolution has succeeded, but when I stand here, I remember my brothers and many, many friends have been killed, just because they did not like Muammar Gaddafi.”
The inclusion of this testimony is a blatant attempt to twist and distort the reality on the ground. The BBC suggests that the ‘revolution’ has succeeded. In reality the ‘rebels’ and the foreign soldiers & special forces leading them, don’t even hold Tripoli, in addition to countless other locations still held by the Libyan resistance. These include Bani Walid and Sirte – locations now subject to NATO-prescribed blockades in an attempt to starve the resistance into submission, coupled with lethal bombing campaigns.
In its crude attempt to deceive the public, the BBC even manages to contradict itself in this one-page report. The testimony it provides above suggests that the alleged victims of the ‘Abu Salim massacre’ were killed because they “did not like Gaddafi“, while the BBC itself claims earlier in the piece, that they were killed for protesting against conditions in the prison.
Associated Press has also picked up this story, citing rebel spokesperson Khalid al-Sherif: “We have discovered the truth about what the Libyan people have been waiting for for many years, and it is the bodies and remains of the Abu Salim massacre“. As with the BBC piece, this report also admits that only a few bone fragments have been found and excavation has not even begun.
Most certainly, this ‘mass grave’ propaganda will drop out of the news without retraction from the NTC liars or the media lackeys that peddled it, as it turns out to be an utter falsehood. ‘Abu Salim’ is an event toted by globalist-Zionist funded Human Rights Watch as the trump card in the propaganda war against Libya. It is an event for which there is no physical evidence, and HRW’s report on the event hinges on the testimony of one person who is now residing in the United States. Laughably, HRW even admits that they cannot independently verify a single detail of the man’s claims.
Update: 25 September, 2011
It was unclear, however, whether the site actually was a mass grave, as no excavation has taken place. Members of the media were shown bones at the site, but medics with CNN staffers on the scene said the bones did not appear to be human.
(THE AUSTRALIAN) THE civilians pouring out of the besieged city of Sirte accused NATO of genocide yesterday as rebel forces called in reinforcements and prepared for a fresh assault on Muammar Gaddafi’s home town.
Long lines of civilian vehicles were leaving after a night of NATO air attacks on the town. Rebel forces fighting for the National Transitional Council added artillery and mortar fire.
The people leaving the town, many looking scared, said conditions inside Sirte were disastrous. They made claims which, if verified, are a challenge for NATO – which operates under a UN mandate to protect civilians – saying the NATO bombing raids hit homes, schools and hospitals.
“It was worse than awful,” said Riab Safran, 28, as his car was searched by rebel fighters outside Sirte. His family had slept on the beach because the houses were being bombed, he said. “They hit all kinds of buildings – schools, hospitals,” he said.
He could not distinguish between the NATO bombs and the rebels shells, he said, but believed it was a NATO bomb that destroyed his home on Saturday.
NATO said its warplanes bombed a number of military targets, including a rocket launcher, artillery and ammunition stores.
Some of those interviewed said the Gaddafi forces were making people stay in the city. Others said residents were frightened of the rebel fighters, who were reported to be abducting women from cars trying to leave Sirte. NTC fighters denied the charges.
Residents said power and water had run out and petrol was 88 Libyan dinars ($72) a litre. The water shortage has produced an epidemic of diseases, according to medical staff at a clinic in the town of Harawa, 40km east of Sirte.
But the Gaddafi forces had supplies of ammunition, pasta, oil, flour and food, residents said. They used an open radio channel to taunt the rebels, insisting the city would never be taken.
Meanwhile, Libya’s transitional justice minister said he had imposed a measure abolishing the country’s state security, prosecution and courts, which sentenced regime opponents to prison.
At a press conference in Tripoli, Mohammed al-Alagi said he had signed the order to disband the security agencies, but it still needed approval by the NTC.
He said the order included the abolition of a special court where many opposition members were sentenced to life in prisons such as Abu Salim in Tripoli, where inmates were reportedly massacred by the Gaddafi regime.
Rebel leaders are pressing ahead with efforts to do away with some of the hated remnants of the former regime even though fighting continues and Gaddafi’s whereabouts remain unknown.
In a boost to Libya’s economy, Italian and French energy companies have begun oil production in Libya after months of civil war, a potential economic lifeline for the new government.
Officials of the transitional administration are still awaiting international action to unfreeze billions of dollars in Libya’s assets. They say the funds unfrozen so far are not enough to rebuild the country after 42 years of the Gaddafi regime.
The de facto prime minister, Mahmoud Jibril, asked the UN Security Council to lift some of the economic sanctions on Libya, but said NATO should stay until civilians were no longer being killed.
Italian energy giant Eni said yesterday it had resumed oil production in Libya. By Monday, 15 major wells had been tapped, producing 31,900 barrels of oil a day.
French energy company Total said it also started oil production in Libya last week.