Tripoli residents face dilemma after Libya Dawn take control of capital

The Guardian reports: Every night is a night of fear in the house of the date palms, a luxurious villa in the western suburbs of Tripoli. Its occupants are among thousands of city residents scared of being arrested by Islamist militias of Libya Dawn, which last week took over the Libyan capital and are targeting those from opposing tribes.

Like many of their neighbours, this family – at their request of anonymity – has sent the women away to safety, but the men left behind face a dilemma. If they leave too, the house, which has elegant carefully-tended date palms in the small courtyard, will likely be broken into and robbed. If they stay, and the militias find them, it could be worse.

“We can’t leave, or the place will be destroyed,” says the youngest son, a student. “We have to stay. These are long nights, I am telling you.”

A particular feature of the occupation of Tripoli by Libya Dawn, the newest of the Middle East’s self-proclaimed revolutionary movements, is the focus on residents from the wrong tribe.

The city was captured after a five week battle, involving heavy and indiscriminate artillery bombardments between Libya Dawn and tribal fighters from Zintan, Warshafan and Warfallah. Now residents whose family names indicate membership of those tribes are being rounded-up, whatever their politics, however tenuous their connection with those tribes. [Continue reading…]

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