Recent Updates

All Updates >

British Activists ‘Raped’ in Libya

Published on: April 5, 2013

Pro-government militiamen are suspected of having raped three British female activists of Pakistani origin in the eastern city of Benghazi, Libya’s deputy prime minister says.

Awsad al-Barassi says the women were part of an overland aid convoy bound for Gaza. The women were travelling with two male companions when they were kidnapped Tuesday on their way to the Benghazi airport after deciding to return to Britain.

Al-Barassi told Libya al-Hurra TV late yesterday that he has met the women and they are in “very bad shape”.

Pakistani foreign ministry spokesman Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry condemned the incident and said Islamabad is in contact with Libyan authorities.

The Foreign Office said it is aware of an incident involving British nationals who were part of an aid convoy. It did not elaborate.

The overland convoy left Britain on February 25 but was stuck for days along the Libyan-Egyptian border after Egyptian border guards refused to let them cross.

Mr al-Barassi told Libya al-Hurra TV that two of the women are sisters and their father witnessed the rape.

Their 10-vehicle convoy carrying medical supplies was named “Mavi Marmara” in honour of a ship involved in a 2010 deadly flotilla incident, according to Huseyin Oruc of IHH, a Turkish humanitarian relief organisation.

IHH was the group that helped organise the international flotilla that was attacked on May 31, 2010. Israeli commandos stormed the Mavi Marmara while stopping the flotilla that was trying to breach an Israeli blockade of Gaza. Eight Turks and a Turkish-American were killed, and dozens of activists and seven Israeli soldiers were wounded.

IHH mediated the release of the kidnapped women and men after they were contacted by the convoy’s organisers and asked for help. The man and his daughters are scheduled to return to Britain today, he said.

He said the women were attacked and robbed, and that their abductors included a taxi driver and a group of men in military uniforms.

Pakistani foreign ministry spokesman Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry condemned the attack and said the Pakistani embassy in Libya had lodged a strong protest with Libyan authorities

“A heinous crime has been committed against these female activists,” he said, adding that he hoped stern action would be taken against the attackers.

(Times of Malta)

Yisrael Beytenu, All rights reserved