Bashagha threatens use of force against "armed groups" that attacked demonstrators on Wednesday evening

Alwasat - Cairo Thu 27 Aug 2020, 02:46 AM
alwasat radio

The Minister of Interior for the Government of National Accord, Fathi Bashagha, warned on Thursday, that the ministry may be pushed to use force against armed groups that attacked the demonstrators on Wednesday evening.

The ministry said in a statement, that it has followed "the attack on peaceful demonstrators on Wednesday night by an armed group, using their weapons, as well as kidnapping some demonstrators, causing a state of panic among citizens and threatening security and public order."

The statement emphasized that it "monitored these armed groups and the official bodies responsible for them", stressing their full readiness "to protect defenseless civilians from the oppression of a group of mobs who do not represent the honorable heroes of Operation Volcano of Anger and do not respect the blood and honor of innocent peaceful demonstrators."

The ministry warned against "attempting to harm demonstrators, intimidation or seizure of freedom in violation of the law, and that it may be forced to use force to protect civilians, in accordance with its moral, national and legal duties towards the Libyan people."

Adding: "there is no legitimacy for those who violate the dignity of the citizen," stressing that "we will never allow the blood of Libyans to be wasted or neglect the protection of their constitutional rights to peaceful protest in accordance with the law."

On Wednesday evening, security forces cordoned off the Martyrs Square in Tripoli, and fired shots to disperse young people who attempted to demonstrate for the fourth day, against widespread corruption, poor services and living conditions. The attempt to demonstrate occured despite a decision by the Presidential Council to impose a complete curfew beginning at 6 pm on Wednesday.

According to activists, security forces fired bullets to disperse the demonstrators and many individuals were arrested.

Eyewitnesses confirmed to Alwasat that Martyrs Square is now completely empty.

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