News / Africa

HRW: Detained Gadhafi Fighters Beaten, Executed

A  Libyan man sits near a mural of Moammar Gadhafi, Benghazi, September 20, 2012.
A Libyan man sits near a mural of Moammar Gadhafi, Benghazi, September 20, 2012.
VOA News
Human Rights Watch says it has new evidence indicating that forces opposed to Moammar Gadhafi beat and executed dozens of his supporters after the ousted leader's capture and death last year.
Gadhafi died on October 20, 2011, after his convoy of supporters trying to flee the city of Sirte was hit by an airstrike and attacked by militia members.
The report, issued Wednesday, says militias subjected detainees from Gadhafi's convoy to brutal beatings and later executed 66 of them at a nearby hotel.
Human Rights Watch's Peter Bouckaert said the event should be considered a war crime and prosecuted as such.
"We should not forget that more than 66 people in his convoy, who just happened to be part of the people fleeing from Sirte, were taken away and very brutally abused," he said. "We have videos taken by the rebels themselves showing them beating, cursing and spitting upon these captured persons – and then they were executed. So it's a very significant war crime and should be prosecuted as such."
Human Rights Watch says it used the videos and hospital morgue photos to link at least 17 detainees to the bodies found at the hotel.
The group says its findings also call into question the conclusion of Libyan officials that Gadhafi was killed in crossfire between loyalist fighters and provisional government forces. It says Gadhafi and his son Mutassim were alive in video taken after their capture, and later found dead.
Human Rights Watch raised questions about the circumstances of Gadhafi's death last October and called on Libyan authorities to investigate a possible mass execution of his supporters during the battle for Sirte. The group said Wednesday that it has seen no evidence that an inquiry is under way or has been carried out.
The new report is based on videos taken by opposition forces and interviews with surviving members of Gadhafi's convoy.
Libya's new government has been trying to gain control of militias, which have grown stronger since Gadhafi's fall. National Assembly President Mohammed el-Magarief vowed last month to dissolve all militias and military camps operating outside the control of the government.

You May Like

Isolation, Despair Weigh on Refugees in Remote German Camp

Refugees resettled near village of Holzdorf deep in German forestland say there is limited interaction with public, mutual feelings of distrust

Britons Divided Over Bombing IS

Surveys show Europeans generally support more military action against Islamic State militants, but sizable opposition exists in Britain

Russia Blacklists Soros Foundations as 'Undesirable'

Russian officials add Soros groups to a list of foreign and international organizations banned from giving grants to Russian partners

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: dale from: felton,ca
October 18, 2012 4:32 PM
Invading a country which is not an immediate threat is the mother of all war crimes, and all acts which follow from that act are, by definition, war crimes. This is from the UN Charter.

In Response

by: Anonymous
October 19, 2012 12:45 AM
MSM will continue to prattle on about how an evil dictator was overthrown, while the once stable and prosperous country devolves into chaos.

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.
With HIV, Can We Get to Zero?i
Carol Pearson
November 29, 2015 1:23 PM
The theme of this year's World AIDS Day is "Getting to Zero." The U.N. says new HIV infections have been reduced by 35 percent since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths are down by 42 percent since the peak in 2004. VOA's Carol Pearson takes a look at what it might take to actually have an AIDS-free generation.

Video With HIV, Can We Get to Zero?

The theme of this year's World AIDS Day is "Getting to Zero." The U.N. says new HIV infections have been reduced by 35 percent since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths are down by 42 percent since the peak in 2004. VOA's Carol Pearson takes a look at what it might take to actually have an AIDS-free generation.

Video Political Motives Seen Behind Cancelled Cambodian Water Festival

For the fourth time in the five years since more than 350 people were killed in a stampede at Cambodia’s annual water festival, authorities canceled the event this year. Officials blamed environmental reasons as the cause, but many see it as fallout from rising political tensions with a fresh wave of ruling party intimidation against the opposition. David Boyle and Kimlong Meng report from Phnom Penh.

Video African Circus Gives At-Risk Youth a 2nd Chance

Ethiopia hosted the first African Circus Arts Festival this past weekend with performers from seven different African countries. Most of the performers are youngsters coming form challenging backgrounds who say the circus gave them a second chance.

Video US Lawmakers Brace for End-of-Year Battles

U.S. lawmakers are returning to Washington for Congress’ final working weeks of the year. And, as VOA's Michael Bowman reports, a full slate of legislative business awaits them, from keeping the federal government open to resolving a battle with the White House over the admittance of Syrian refugees.

Video Taiwan Looks for Role in South China Sea Dispute

The Taiwanese government is one of several that claims territory in the hotly contested South China Sea, but Taipei has long been sidelined in the dispute, overshadowed by China. Now, as the Philippines challenges Beijing’s claims in an international court at The Hague, Taipei is looking to publicly assert its claims. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.

Video After Terrorist Attacks, Support for Refugees Fades

The terrorists who killed and injured almost 500 people around Paris this month are mostly French or Belgian nationals. But at least two apparently took advantage of Europe’s migrant crisis to sneak into the region. The discovery has hardened views about legitimate refugees, including those fleeing the same extremist violence that hit the French capital. Lisa Bryant has this report for VOA from the Paris suburb of Cergy-Pontoise

Video Syrian Refugees in US Express Concern for Those Left Behind

Syrian immigrants in the United States are concerned about the negative tide of public opinion and the politicians who want to block a U.S. plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. Zlatica Hoke reports many Americans are fighting to dispel suspicions linking refugees to terrorists.

Video Thais Send Security Concerns Down the River

As Thailand takes in the annual Loy Krathong festival, many ponder the country’s future and security. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai.

Video Islamic State Unfazed by Losses in Iraq, Syria

Progress in the U.S.-led effort to beat Islamic State on its home turf in Iraq and Syria has led some to speculate the terror group may be growing desperate. But counterterror officials say that is not the case, and warn the recent spate of terror attacks is merely part of the group’s evolution. VOA National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more.

Video Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continues

One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs