Fear and uncertainty in Tripoli

BBC Eyewitness accounts from Tripoli, collected by the BBC, paint a picture of the current mood in the capital city.

“Every night in Tripoli, since the coalition air strikes began, people race to the rooftops of their buildings or houses at the first audible sound of anti-aircraft artillery shots or the rumble of an explosion.

A few minutes in, you will start hearing the men whistling, some are close, others from a distance, and – in the otherwise still and silent dead of night – the chorus of whistling echoes across the neighbourhoods and rises up.

No-one really knows what the whistling means – we’re left privately assuming that there is an underlying tone of excitement in the choir and not of the type that would impress the regime.”

There are also many reports of people going missing, and those who are released from detention speak of severe beatings. In one prison facility there are said to be hundreds of Libyans from Tripoli, Misrata, Zawiya and Zuwara being held.

They have a tape that replays 24 hours a day in the cells on loud speakers – the audio of Col Gaddafi’s first televised speech after the start of the uprising where he says he will ‘sterilise’ Libya house-by-house, street-by-street,” one recently released man says . According to him, entire families are brought in after their sons were detained during protests.

While anti-Gaddafi voices have been stirring more and more in the capital and excitement builds among those who oppose Gaddafi, the atmosphere is still quite grim for now.

Read the article here.

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