Tripoli, the capital city of Libya is the scene of mass protests against the indiscriminate bombing of Bani Walid, where up to 100 civilians have died and hundreds been wounded, many be illegal chemical weapons, according to recounts published today.
The town has been under siege for many weeks and subjected to rocket attacks from far outside the city but in recent days an assault has taken place on the town attempting to subdue its population to the “authority” of the Tripoli based “ratverment”.
Protests are gathering momentum across the country after the President of the Ratverment, CIA agent of 30 years who returned to Libya only this past year, Mohamed Megarief, tried to get to the town, gave up due to a hail of artillery projectiles, including reactive rockets fired from three positions by militias.
Libyan police and ratverment military forces in Tripoli armed with machine guns and anti-aircraft guns kept protesters away from the venue of the ratverment’s Congress, where they shot at least one protester at a similar protest when some 500 briefly entered the building before being turned back by machine gun fire from Megarief’s guards.
Protesters across Libya are demanding an end to the attacks against Bani Walid and are accusing the ratverment authorities of indiscriminately massacring civilians and have demanded the immediate cessation of the offensive of about 2 weeks, and the beginning of negotiations with the population, whose security should be guaranteed.
Tuesday morning, more troops and trucks with missile launchers were deployed near Bani Walid, by ‘lawless militia’, but the population have refused to surrender the town and are defending it with whatever weapons they have, which are no match to the attacking militia.
The residents in Bani Walid fear a slaughter if the militia succeed in entering the town, as they have already attacked civilians fleeing the town into the desert. The hospital is under intense bombing by the attacking forces and patients along with foreign medical workers have had to be evacuated.
One million Libyans have been forced into exile by the war of the past year, amounting to a quarter of the population. Anyone remaining in Libya who has any part in the Jamahiriya system of direct democracy has been incarcerated in make-shift jails across the country, especially in Misrata, Benghazi, Tripoli and other north eastern and north western towns.
The total number of political prisoners being held incommunicado without access to lawyers, visits by family members, and often subjected to torture and even death, is estimated to be between 15 – 20,000. The casualties in the war of the past year are estimated to be 100,000, with about half that number having been killed by U.S.-led NATO air forces bombing, and the other half by mercenaries, Al-Qaida and other allied anti-Jamahiriya terrorist ground forces.
The world media and organizations largely remain silent about the attacks on Bani Walid, which along with Sirte last year suffered a siege of many months that all but wiped out the cities during intensive bombing, while all food, water and medicine was blockaded. The UN Secretary General has voiced his concern and said the town must subject itself to the lawless authority of Tripoli-based ‘ratverment’.