News / Africa

    Libya's Liberation Announcement Set For Sunday

    Libyan children  celebrate in Souk el-Juma district in Tripoli, Libya,  Oct. 21, 2011.
    Libyan children celebrate in Souk el-Juma district in Tripoli, Libya, Oct. 21, 2011.
    Al Pessin

    Libya's provisional leaders have set Sunday as the official end of the revolution that toppled, and eventually killed, Moammar Gadhafi, with a ceremony planned for the rebel headquarters city of Benghazi and celebrations expected throughout the country.

    There was a party atmosphere in several parts of Tripoli Saturday night, as people awaited the announcement of the formal end of the revolution. It has been a moment eight months in the making, since protesters started the uprising that ended 42 years of dictatorship.

    At the Ras Ajdar border crossing with Tunisia, Libyans in flag bedecked cars packed with children flowed across, as exiled families returned to join the celebrations. The old red, green and black Libyan flag, adopted anew by the National Transitional Council, was everywhere.

    The formal end of the revolution, after months of fierce fighting, is to mark the beginning of a process to hold elections, write a new constitution and form a new government.

    The event will take place three days after Gadhafi was killed in questionable circumstances in or near his hometown, Sirte, as rebel forces were overrunning his supporters' last strongholds. There have been international calls for an investigation into the circumstances of the former leader's death.

    He was apparently traveling in a convoy that was hit by a NATO airstrike. Rebel fighters say they found him hiding in a drain pipe after the attack. Cell phone videos show him injured but alive, but he was dead by the time he arrived at a local hospital, raising concerns that rebel fighters executed him, or possibly beat him to death either deliberately or accidentally.

    His body was later put on display in a freezer at a butcher shop in Misrata, where opponents joyfully passed by and took pictures. Rebel supporters also set up an open-air display of broken statues and other artifacts in Misrata.

    One of the organizers, Abdel Basset Al-Haddad said the exhibit demonstrates that the Gadhafi era of tyranny and one-party rule is over and Libyans can “start a new life.”

    Gadhafi's mercurial and often brutal one-man control of Libya started with a coup in 1969, and only began to erode during the revolution, finally breaking down in August, when he fled his capital.

    The NATO alliance, which conducted a seven-month bombing campaign to disable Gadhafi's forces and protect civilians, said its warplanes hit a convoy of what it called 11 armed vehicles near Sirte on Thursday, the day Gadhafi was killed. NATO says its planes flew again on Friday, apparently on reconnaissance missions, but did not carry out any bombing runs. Officials say the NATO mission will formally end on October 31.

    The euphoria among rebels and their supporters at Gadhafi's death, and widespread relief that the fighting appears to be over, will be prevalent again on Sunday. But before long Libyans will have to get down to the difficult business of building a new society.

    Some analysts believe Gadhafi's death makes it less likely that the country will face an insurgency. But others warn that the unity of the anti-Gadhafi forces may be in jeopardy now that their sworn enemy is gone.

    You May Like

    US Leaders Who Served in Vietnam War Look Back and Ahead

    In New York Times opinion piece, Secretary of State John Kerry, Senator John McCain and former Senator Bob Kerrey say as US strengthens relations with Vietnam, it is important to remember lessons learned from war

    Who Are US Allies in Fight Against Islamic State?

    There is little but opportunism keeping coalition together analysts warn — SDFs Arab militias are not united even among themselves, frequently squabble and don’t share Kurds' vision for post-Assad Syria

    Learning Foreign Language Helps US Soldiers Bridge Culture Gap

    Effective interaction with local populations part of everyday curriculum at Monterey, California, Defense Language Institute

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

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora