Politics | Human rights
Friday; day of giant protests in Libya
Most of Libya is under the control of protesters. Here, the Friday prayers have been attended by huge masses in an unprecedented show of Libyan unity. In Benghazi, Al-Bayda and other "liberated" cities in eastern Libya, the Friday prayers marked the start of a "march of the millions", demonstrating against the Ghaddafi regime.
Transitional authorities in Benghazi, composed of both civilians and security forces, say they expect an attack against the city at any moment, preparing for its defence. But, they emphasise, they keep preparing a "march towards Tripoli" to defend the revolution.
The "final battle of Tripoli" for the moment therefore seems to be up to the capital's residents and reinforcements from nearby cities and towns. And the battle is ongoing.
Protesters in Tripoli today have mostly avoided the infamous Green Square, defended by pro-regime forces, rather concentrating on the avenues and open spaces along the capital's coastline. Here, they hope, they will be less exposed to snipers, mercenaries and armed troops.
Throughout the afternoon, however, tens of thousands of protesters from Tripoli and reinforcements from outside are streaming towards the Green Square, where fighting is increasing. Another hotspot area is the Fashloom suburb, close to Tajura, where protests are greater than ever.
But there are already confirmed reports of shooting against the large demonstrating masses and of at least two deaths and many wounded. Gunshots and explosions are heard and reported from all over the city, including resident neighbourhood and downtown Tripoli.
During the afternoon, all reports from Tripoli seem to indicate that the fighting is intensifying, with pro-regime forces attacking protesters wherever they see them. There are even unconfirmed reports of fire being opened at worshippers during the Friday prayers.
So far, there are no reports of protesters shooting back or armed forces supporting the protesters being involved in the fighting. But this could soon change, as repeated reports talk of protesters backed by armed units entering Tripoli in large numbers.
By staff writers
© afrol News
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