News / Middle East

Exodus from Libya Grows As Conflict Continues

Soldiers and dozens of tanks from the Libyan military's elite Khamis Brigade, led by Gadhafi's youngest son Khamis Gadhafi, take positions and check vehicles after arriving hours earlier on the road in Harshan, 10km east of Zawiya, in Libya, Feb. 28, 201
Soldiers and dozens of tanks from the Libyan military's elite Khamis Brigade, led by Gadhafi's youngest son Khamis Gadhafi, take positions and check vehicles after arriving hours earlier on the road in Harshan, 10km east of Zawiya, in Libya, Feb. 28, 201

The number of people fleeing Libya continues to grow as the battle for control of the North African country shows no signs of abating.

It is now estimated that more than 110,00 people, many of them foreign migrants, have fled into Egypt on the east and Tunisia to the west.  But U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said Monday that many of those wanting to leave are stranded, lacking the resources to escape.

Middle East analysts predict a lengthy struggle for control of Libya, with both pro- and anti-Gadhafi forces increasingly entrenched in their positions. Civil war, they say, is not out of the question.

Moammar Gadhafi told reporters on Monday that the people of Libya "love" him and are prepared to die for him.  He spoke in Tripoli, the capital and last major city that his forces control.  He again rejected any plans to resign.

When asked by reporters about Mr. Gadhafi's comments, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice called him "delusional."  She said the statement "underscores how unfit he is to lead and how disconnected he is from reality."

Meanwhile, protests against the Gadhafi government continued Monday.  In Tripoli, security forces dispersed several hundred demonstrators.

Witnesses said protesters gathered in Tripoli's Tajouri district and shouted slogans against Mr. Gadhafi.  Government forces rushed to the scene to break up the protests.

In Misurata, about 200 kilometers east of Tripoli, witnesses said skirmishes raged between rebel forces and those loyal to Mr. Gadhafi. Residents of Misurata and the western refinery town city of Zawiya are said to be bracing for a possible attacks by pro-Gadhafi troops.

Also on Monday, Libyan war planes attacked ammunition depots south of the opposition stronghold of Benghazi in eastern Libya.

France said Monday that it is sending two planes with humanitarian aid to Benghazi to support opposition forces.

In another development, the U.S. State Department said it has been informed that the Libyan government has dismissed its ambassador to Washington.  Ali Aujali, who defected to the opposition last week, has been replaced by a Gadhafi loyalist.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

 

Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter
and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs