Radio Netherlands Worldwide

SSO Login

More login possibilities:

  • Facebook
  • Flickr
  • Twitter
  • Google
  • LinkedIn
Sunday 26 October  
Death in Al-Zintan, Libya
News Desk's picture
Al Bayda, Libya
Al Bayda, Libya

HRW: No mercenaries in eastern Libya

Published on : 2 March 2011 - 4:02pm | By RNW News Desk (photo: YouTube/QuatchiCanada)
More about:

Human Rights Watch says it has seen no evidence of mercenaries being used in eastern Libya. This contradicts widespread earlier reports in the international media that African soldiers had been flown in to fight rebels in the region as Muammar Gaddafi sought to keep control.

In an interview with Radio Netherlands Worldwide in Libya, Peter Bouckaert from Human Rights Watch said he had conducted research and found no proof of mercenaries being used. Investigator Bouckaert, who has been in the region for two weeks, told RNW that he had been to Al Bayda after receiving reports that 156 mercenaries had been arrested there.

Black Libyans
The town is to the east of the city Benghazi and is also in the hands of the anti-Gaddafi protesters.
The rights investigator said that what he found there were, in fact, 156 soldiers from the south of Libya and not from another African country. After talking to them he found out that they were all black Libyans of African descent. The soldiers have since been released by the protesters.

According to Bouckaert, the support of the black southern Libyans for the Gaddafi regime is explicable as Gaddafi fought to counter discrimination against this group in Libyan society.

In the west
RNW's Mohammed Abdulrahman, who interviewed Bouckaert in Benghazi, says that the fact that there are few economic opportunities in the south also leads to southern Libyans joining the army.

HRW has so far only conducted research in the east of the country which is under the control of the protesters, but it says it could well be the case that reports of mercenaries being used in the areas still under government control in the west are also inaccurate.

International media report that the mercenaries are gathering in the central southern town of Sabha, known to be loyal to Gaddafi, and are being sent out from there.

Our reporter says the southern location of the town means it is possible that the soldiers here are also from the south of the country and not African mercenaries as claimed in the international media. As the area is under control of Gaddafi's forces this cannot be verified.


cinnamonape 14 July 2011 - 11:47pm / Singapore

Apparently HRW didn't interview these young men from Chad and their military recruiter. To say NONE of the individuals were not from other nations is clearly false. 27 March 2011 - 2:07am / New Zealand

This is not broadcast in any media, which goes to show that the propaganda was designed and manufactured against Libya to justify the attack, and the future invasion/occupation.

It is sad really, but the world has been fouled many times over now, three times in a decade. First Afghanistan propaganda lies, then Iraq propaganda lies, now Libya propaganda lies.

The use of emotional pictures and scenes causes viewers to stop thinking logically, and usually makes viewers believes what ever is being shown.

I'm shocked that not even me questioned Western propaganda against Libya, now that I'm researching I found this, very surprizing.

Thanks alot.

Debunking Leigh Meyers below 22 March 2011 - 11:36pm / USA

Leigh Meyers attempts to insert propaganda from a "Maltese blog". lmao. She is another American Dupe who swallows well.

Leigh Meyers 23 March 2011 - 1:09am / US

1> I'm not a 'she'.

2> Your comment on my post got rejected for two reasons:

A> NO anonymous posts on my site... Go find somewhere else to troll.

B> NO ONE has a monopoly on the truth.

All you were spewing was your thought that Maltese blogs are some untruthful joke. Attempt to debunk the information, or depart.

Equals "C": Comment marked "Spam".

I'd suggest RNW do the same lest it become a haven for people with a lot to say and nothing to back it up.

Anonymous 6 March 2011 - 1:23am / libya

the black community in libya is about 35%of the public of libya and those u see even in the west of libya are libyans and i tell you it is a propaganda that they r messineries

Leigh Meyers 5 March 2011 - 7:21pm / USA

Explain this then HRW

Anonymous 11 April 2011 - 1:09pm / USA

Explain what? Some historical hyperbole, blog posts, an unexplained and dramatic photo, of alight-ish pigmented person in Libya?

Explain the guy I called Khaled here. A rifel man involved in interrogating nine gov't (Libyan) prisoners, 22 of who were found dead next day and blamed on Gaddafi's African mercenaries. I've had people laugh in my face suggesting he's Chechen, but there he is among these Islamist rebels, blaming the regime (another point Serbs understand).

This is about the feared Black mercenaries. All those black guys fleeing through the desert and sinking in the sea are running from the endemic racism and lynch mobs of deep east Libya. Some who didn't make it wind up harrassed, beatesm shot, hanged, de-panted in public, burnedto a crisp (after death, I hope), etc. Certainly hundreds.

What this report suggests (but doesn't prove) is few or none of those are the loathed mercenaries who deserve what they get. Instead they're Libyans who TEND TO support the government in this quick-moving civil war (as American Blacks TEND TO vote democrat).

Post new comment

Please be reminded all comments must be in English, short and to the point - guideline 250 words. Abusive and inappropriate comments will be removed.

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <p> <br>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.

More information about formatting options