United Nations A/hrc/19/68

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Al Khums

  1. According to interviews conducted by the Commissions, it appears that a small number of Tawerghan families moved from Tripoli to Al Khums due to the attacks on Tawerghans by Misratan thuwar.627

  2. By mid-September 2011, thuwar from Misrata entered Al Khums. In one instance, the Commission was informed that the armed men identified themselves as being from the Misratan thuwar and arrested five men and took them away. No reasons were given for the arrest and the families were not informed of where they were taken. Those that were eventually released informed the families of those still detained that the men were being held in Misrata by the Shuhada brigade.628

  3. The Commission was also informed that one group of Tawerghans was searched by Misratan thuwar in mid-September and given one week to leave the town. A week later, the same armed men reportedly returned and arrested a young man who was beaten in front of his family.629 According to the testimony received, when the young man’s mother and sister tried to prevent the arrest, they were hit with rifle butts. No reasons were given for the arrest. During this incident, the thuwar fighters from Misrata were reportedly shouting, “we will kill you, you slaves”.630 According to the interviewee, the family was given no information as to where their son was taken; two months later the son managed to call them and say he was being held in Misrata.

  4. In a separate incident, also in late September 2011, a group of armed men is said to have entered the house of a Tawerghan family and arrested two men, telling them “you blacks, you animals. Forget about Tawergha, it is now the new Misrata”.631 The men were reportedly taken to a medical clinic in Al Khums where 10 others, both Tawerghans and other Libyans, were detained. The person interviewed by the Commission was held for 5 days and was severely beaten with rubber hoses, whips, cables and wooden sticks. Scars were still visible two months later. The interviewee noted that the detainees of Arab descent were also beaten, but not to the extent of the Tawerghans.632


  1. The Commission has recorded attacks on Tawerghans based in Sirte in late September and early October 2011.

  2. In mid-September 2011, armed men from the Qariat al-Mujahda thuwar from Misrata reportedly entered a farm in Sirte where a number of Tawerghan families were staying. According to the interview conducted by the Commission, eight men were arrested with no reasons given for their arrest and the families were not informed of where the men were taken.633

  3. By early October 2011, thuwar from different parts of the country were battling Qadhafi forces in and around Sirte. The Commission has received a report of 17 captured Tawerghan Qadhafi fighters being executed by Misrata thuwar (see chap. III, sect. B).634

  4. The Commission received the testimonies of four Tawerghan men who had reportedly been arrested, detained and severely tortured while in Sirte (see chap. III, sect. E). A fifth man who had been with them who reportedly died as a result of torture. The men were rearrested in late December 2011 by the Misrata thuwar, which had “1973 brigade” painted on the side of the vehicle.635 In the course of their detention, in various locations over the course of two weeks, the men were reportedly stripped, kicked in the back, hit with baseball bats, beaten with wooden sticks and electric cables, and handcuffed at the ankles and wrists for days.636 They told the Commission that during “interrogations” they were beaten, had hot wax poured in their ears and were told to confess to committing rape in Misrata.637 The Commission was told that one man had diesel poured on to his back which was then set alight; the same man was held in shackles for 12 days.638 Another man was reportedly taken away and never seen again.639 According to the interviewees, they were eventually released through the intervention of thuwar from Benghazi who took them to a hospital in Sirte and then on to Benghazi.

  5. The Commission reviewed the medical reports of the four men as well as photographs which detailed the extensive physical trauma that they had evidently undergone. Two of the men had multiple infected wounds. The man who had been shackled was no longer able to stand. The other two men had broken bones in their hands and for one, a loss of feeling in one of his feet was attributed to having been handcuffed at the ankle. Injuries were still visible. The Commission has been unable to verify what happened to the fifth man.


  1. The Commission has received a report that a Tawerghan, a captured Qadhafi fighter, was held for five days at an unofficial detention centre in Zlitan where he was severely beaten with wood sticks and rubber cables.640 After five days he was reportedly transferred to a detention centre in Misrata.

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