Libya Alhurra Updates

Posts tagged Misrata

Jul 2

Tripoli Freedom Fighters in Misrata

English transcript:

Interviewer: Speak, one by one, as you feel like it.

First freedom fighter: In the name of God, may our martyrs, the free Libyans, rest in peace. I hope that they are in Janna [paradise] now. We are youth from Tripoli. We would like to tell and assure our brothers in the capital that we are coming to them with the freedom fighters of Misrata, Misrata that welcomed us and gave us all it has. They have food and oil, not like in Tripoli where Abou Shafshoofa [funny nickname for Gaddafi] is. There is no oil, etc., there are shortages of everything. To the youth of Tripoli: Rise up and leave Tripoli, if you can, and come to us here. Misrata is steadfast. They will never penetrate it and victory is soon. Salam.
Second freedom fighter: First, may our martyrs in the east, south and north of Libya rest in peace. We are youth from Tripoli. We came here to fight with the freedom fighters of Misrata. Misrata is the symbol of steadfastness in the whole of Libya. And we will be victorious and we will defeat Abou Shafshoofa.

Interviewer: Please tell us about the situation and life condition in our beloved Tripoli.

Second fighter: Well, what to tell you! It takes one week to fill the car with oil. Everything is expensive and there are major shortages, especially food. The freedom fighters are conducting daily attacks and operations.

Third freedom fighter: May our martyrs all across the land of Libya rest in peace. I want to say to Abou Shafshoofa: We are coming for you to Bab Al Aziziya. We are coming for you!

All chanting: Youth of the capital, we want the decisive [victorious] night!

First fighter: I say to the youth of Tajoura and Souk al-Jumaa: We are so proud of you. And if you know the situation in Tripoli and how critical it is, in the name of God, I say that those people who seem to be supporters of Abou Shafshoofa are not. I say to the youth of Tajoura and Souk al-Jumaa, Fashloum, al-Dahmani and Gergamish: We must put a bit of more pressure on Gaddafi’s troops. There are more than 15,000 Tripoli youth outside the capital. We fear for our families but with faith and the help of God, we will be victorious. VICTORY!

Jun 26

In battered Libya town, kids get a taste of normal

June 26, 2011 - Associated Press - Misrata:

In battered Libya town, kids get a taste of normal

A few weeks ago, Ras Mouftah Elementary School in central Misrata was just another public building abandoned in the fight for this Libyan city.

Now two dozen boys aged 4 to 9 are watching as the rebel tricolor unfurls from the school flagpole. Hands on their hearts, they struggle to sing along to a tape recording of the rebel anthem. Their backpacks are emblazoned with the words “Feb. 17 Revolution.”

Misrata, the port city jolted into the international headlines in Libya’s civil war, is struggling to regain its balance, even as rockets continue to hit its center daily and wounded rebels are brought in from the front lines a few miles away.

The craving for normality became evident as rebel control of Misrata solidified and parents in the neighborhood around the Ras Mouftah school started thinking of ways to rebuild city life. The school principal, Souad Saffar, leaped into action.

"I took my car and went around to all the women I knew, urging them to get out and help me start up the school," she said.

It took a week to mop up the seven classrooms, set up the desks, and paint over the words “Libyan Jamahiriyah,” the official term for the regime set up by Moammar Gadhafi that is now under rebel attack.

"I was really worried the project would fail, that parents would still be scared to let their kids out and that only five or six children would show up," Saffar told The Associated Press.

Instead, when it reopened, 250 children arrived. Unable to cope with such a large number, Saffar divided attendance by gender: girls one day, boys the next.

(Read More)

Jun 25

The Paperwork of a Man at War

June 25, 2011 - New Zealand Herald:

The dark green box files are packed in rows that stretch up to the ceiling - as dull as dull could be. But the papers hidden inside them will sink Muammar Gaddafi.

In these boxes, hidden at a secure location in the besieged rebel city of Misrata, lie thousands of documents containing the orders given by the Libyan leader and transmitted by his generals to unleash the torture, arrest and bombardment that have torn the country apart. For war crimes prosecutors, they are pure gold.

The International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, has already filed indictments against Gaddafi, his son, Saif al-Islam, and his intelligence chief, Abdullah Senussi, for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The Observer was granted exclusive access to view some of the files and found the paperwork astonishing. On the top of one file is a letter from March 4, two weeks after Misrata rose up, signed by the general in charge of quelling the protest: Youssef Ahmed Basheer Abu Hajar. It tells its “fighting formations”: “It is absolutely forbidden for supply cars, fuel and other services to enter the city of Misrata from all gates and checkpoints.”

Or, to put it more bluntly, Gaddafi ordered his army to inflict starvation on the citizens of Misrata.

(Read More)

Jun 24

Libya: Rockets rain down on Misrata

June 23, 2011 - BBC:

Libya: Rockets rain down on Misrata

Ali Matieg is tearing through the streets of the Libyan city of Misrata in a rattling ambulance, searching for the site of the latest rocket attack.

Four of them have just landed with a ripple of booms, somewhere in the city centre, sending clouds of brown smoke into the blue evening sky.

It is becoming a daily event in this rebel-held city, where a mood of confident defiance is quickly starting to sour.

The volunteer team in the ambulance stops briefly to ask for directions before arriving in a residential neighbourhood of apartment blocks, where a crowd has gathered to inspect a new, metre-deep hole in the street, and a wall riddled with shrapnel.

"We must leave now," says Dr Matieg, after establishing that no-one was injured here.

He urges people to return to their homes, concerned that another rocket may follow.

Fear is spreading fast again inside the besieged city.

(Read More)

Jun 5

Live call from Misrata, June 5 2011

June 5, 2011, 2:20 am local time: call from Misrata, current situation in the city and area, as well as update from Zliten, recorded live on Libya Alhurra.

English transcript:

Life in Misrata is returning day after day, it is getting better, the basic needs are being provided, inside the city, the medical situation is better. Gas is available, there is a large number of injured who need to be treated outside of Misrata. As for the military situation, the freedom fighters are liberating Misrata, from West, South and East. In Dafniya, it is somewhat calm today. In Karareem area, East of Misrata, some of Gaddafi’s forces advanced, to the Shati’i Al Nakheel, attempting to advance towards that area, fighting continued until mid day. Today, injured were 7, martyred were 4. As far as Tawargha, I do not have many updates from there, as far as airstrikes from NATO coalition. NATO continues to fly overhead Misrata. As for the port, a ship carrying aid has arrived from Benghazi, including emergency aid.

The humanitarian situation in Zlitan is extremely dire, they are under complete siege. They lack basic aids, they need many things. There are large numbers of injured inside Misrata hospital, many of those injured need treatment which can only be provided outside of Misrata and I believe only outside of Libya, since the medical treatments are not available within the hospitals. Gaddafi’s forces’ bombardments have caused severe injuries, since the bombings are short distanced. There are also updates regarding Gaddafi’s forces, that they are using civilian cars and civilian clothing to disguise themselves within the cities.

May 26

Pain and Loss Hits Every Family in Misratah

May 25, 2011 - Amnesty International:

Pain and Loss Hits Every Family in Misratah

Young and old, women and children, killed, injured, disappeared – every family we have met here in Misratah has had its share of pain and loss.

At a house in the Gheiran neighbourhood, south of the city centre, we met the family of ‘Omar Ahmad Al-Gweiri, a 74-year-old farmer and father of five, who was shot dead on the way to his farm on 11 March.

His son struggled to hold back the tears as he told us how his father was killed:  “He left home at 2.45pm to go to the farm to feed the sheep and bring back the milk. He went to the farm every day and I always tried to keep an eye on his movements and to find out if there were kata`ib (al-Gaddafi forces) around so that he did not get in their way as they might have harmed him.

“I always phoned him several times when he went to the farm until he came home. That day I did not get an answer when I called him and at 3.30 pm someone called me to saying that the kata`ib were in the area with tanks and lots of soldiers and weapons.

“Father’s car was shot at as he was going around the roundabout where the road to the airport begins. Two bullets went through the windscreen and hit him in the chest and several bullets hit him in the head and other parts of the body”.

We counted at least a dozen bullet holes in the car.  A witness who worked at the water reservoir nearby told us he saw the ‘Omar’s car being hit by a hail of bullets shot by soldiers nearby.

(Read More)

May 25

Misrata Report - May 25, 2011

May 25, 2011 - Misrata Live Call with Libya Alhurra:

Audio/Video to be uploaded shortly

Translation by wafaa:

People have gone back to normal life, day by day. Now, we have begun to tally statistics of the injured and the deaths. The markets are back. We are receiving aid. The revolutionaries are well prepared and NATO is hitting good targets. The targets were hit. The revolutionaries have succeeded in carrying out successful attacks against Gaddafi’s troops.

We are calculating the statistics about missing people. We have a lot of missing people. Gaddafi’s trooops carried out massacres. So we have to find out what happened to these people.   We have received food supplies and medical aid.

(call dropped)

May 24

Rebels Push Towards Misrata

May 23, 2011 - CNN:

Ben Wedeman follows one group of Libyan rebels ready to prove they’re organized, armed and ready to battle for Misrata.

May 22

Live call from Misrata, May 21 2011

May 21, 2011, 11.20 pm local time: live report from Misrata, as well as update on Zlitan and neighboring areas, recorded live on Libya Alhurra (English transcript below).

Part 1:

Part 2:

English transcript:

P: Salam, how are you today?
F: Saturday began, in West area of Misrata, large number of GRAD rockets and tanks. We are sure of one tank, not sure if more than that, it went on for more than 2hrs. More than 100 sounds of explosion. Thank God, maybe only one martyr from the freedom fighters, from those who protect Dafniya, farmland, preventing Gaddafi’s forces from advancing.

Lots of farmland was burned, wheat and grain. This is not new for Gaddafi, to use a mosque area, to be situated there, to attack and destroy in southern Zlitan. We don’t know why he does this. Farms were left without being tended to in these areas. Farms were burned, crops were not tended for a long time, and now they were attacked, burned from the ground, maybe one or two buildings inside the farms. There is no reason for doing this.

P: Did the freedom fighters advance towards Zlitan?
F: the FFs are protecting all areas, preventing Gaddafi’s forces from advancing, this is the current strategy. They are not planning to advance towards Zlitan, unless there is a good strategy. Today, we requested to go and photograph those areas affected , they told us that the area is open, we were told to hold off, maybe tomorrow.

P: How about the current situation in Misrata, the city itself? Are there protests? Are people able to go out?
F: As far as the situation, it is good, after cleaning, and other activities, there is now an apparent lack of supplies, a dire need of all types of supplies, it is now apparent: food, and medications for chronic diseases (e.g. elderly medications).

P: until now, you have not received these supplies
F: Yes, they reach, but there is no way. Everything is coming from outside, there is no way to survive inside the city.

P: Are there organizations within the city that perform certain aids for the people?
F: Yes, like today, we planned to visit the orphanage with the news group, but this had to be rescheduled for tomorrow. We’ve mentioned that people have begun cleaning the streets, they are also visiting the clinics, providing their services. People are doing this for the benefit of the others, without planning, for the good. Yet the situation, as far as safety, Misrata is living in safety. However, regarding other situations, Misrata needs assistance, there should be humanitarian aids, quickly delivered. We’ve sent people, committees, inside Libya and outside, people should contact these organizations, and tell them these aids are needed, and not only in Misrata, in Dheiba, and in other areas. We have those helping us from various areas, like Tunisia. Next week, we will God willing be going to Jadu.

P: You went from Benghazi, to misrata and now you are going to western mountains?
F: Yes, God willing. Today we obtained news from Zlitan, people are being terrorized, in ways unfathomable to everyone. People are being kidnappings from places such as mosques. People are just having problems living a normal life, and also a lot of rumors are being spread. A lot of bothersome situations are being committed by Gaddafi’s forces.

P: Then Zlitan is under complete control by Gaddafi’s forces?
F: There aren’t large numbers of forces in one place, but cars and clothing all disguised as civilian. He uses the ambulances to carry his forces, hiding weapons underground and in hospitals, hiding the tanks in mosques. I am trying to shed some light on his ways.

P: what about NATO, where there any airstrikes?
F: Yes, there were NATO airstrikes in various areas, like Zlitan, and Sabha, thank God we have been able to communicate with NATO, to ensure that people’s safety is not compromised.

P: You said that you receive information from Sabha, and other places, what can you tell us about the situation in these areas?
F: As for Sabha, there is an extensive number of foreigners, of Gaddafi’s mercenaries, at about 200 meteres, there are about 8-10 mercenaries in the building. People move very carefully to avoid problems. As for Sirte, people are very afraid, there are Gaddafi’s forces, his internal affairs, etc. Inside Sirte, suddenly now, you can’t find them, they have suddenly disappeared, especially internal affairs and other forces such as at checkpoints. There is lack of gasoline, it is only available to a few. Life appears as though it has seized. Now in Houn, the situation is better. Any person, who was born in the Eastern area, specifically in Benghazi, is being treated very badly, just like a terrorist, treated this way by Gaddafi’s security forces.

P: thank you Brother Faraj for today’s updates. I will ask if people here have questions and then you can respond.

May 19

Live update from Misrata, May 19 2011

May 19, 2011, 11:15 pm local time: live report from Misrata, about the situation in the city as well as Zlitan, recorded live on Libya Alhurra.

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