State of terror prevails in two Tripoli neighbourhoodsMarch 4th, 2011 - 1:22 pm ICT by ANI
Tripoli (Libya), Mar. 4 (ANI): A state of terror has seized two working class neighborhoods here, with residents reporting constant surveillance, searches of cars and even cell phones by militiamen armed with Kalashnikovs at block-by-block checkpoints. There have also been a rash of disappearances.
Several people in the neighborhoods of Feshloom and Tajura, speaking on the condition of anonymity for fear of Colonel Qaddafi’s secret police, said militias loyal to the colonel were using photos taken at last week’s protest to track down the men involved.
Residents of Tripoli say they have lost hope that peaceful protests might push Gaddafi from power.
However, according to the New York Times, the climate of fear suggests just how effectively the government’s ruthless application of force in Tripoli has locked down the city and suppressed simmering rage, even as the rebels continue to hold control of the eastern half of the country and a string of smaller western cities surrounding the capital.
“I think the people know that if they make any protest now they will be killed, so all the people in Tripoli are waiting for someone to help them. It is easy to kill anybody here. I have seen it with my own eyes,” the paper quoted one resident, as saying.
“They know that there are people who have energy and who are willing to die, so they pick them up,” another resident said.
Residents of Feshloom showed reporters cell phone photographs taken at Tripoli Central Hospital of a large wound in the chest of a neighbor, Nagi Ali el-Nafishi, 56. They pointed out a bloodstain on the concrete where he had been shot after leaving a mosque last Friday.
A doctor who examined him told reporters that the bullet had exploded his heart and lungs, causing him to die of blood loss within minutes.
Several residents said at least four people from their neighborhood had been killed that day, including Hisham el-Trabelsi, 19, who they said was shot in the head, and Abdel Basit Ismail, 25, who they said was hit by random gunfire while she was calling to a relative involved in the protest.
A few residents said they still hoped that their neighborhoods would turn out to demonstrate against Gaddafi again on Friday, despite the threat of deadly violence or abduction. But many said they feared the killings and disappearances had scared many away. (ANI)
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Tags: blood loss, bloodstain, checkpoints, class neighborhoods, climate of fear, hea, hisham, kalashnikovs, last friday, militiamen, militias, neighbourhoods, new york times, own eyes, peaceful protests, qaddafi, secret police, trabelsi, tripoli libya, western cities