Libyan regime hits back with deadly crackdown

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AFP
February 19, 2011

CAIRO — Security forces have killed more than 80 anti-regime protesters in unrest-swept eastern Libya, Human Rights Watch said on Saturday, after Tripoli pledged to crush opposition.

On the fifth day of an unprecedented challenge to his four-decade regime, Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi had still made no public comment although he reportedly appeared at a mass rally of supporters in the capital on Thursday.

After regime opponents had used Facebook to mobilise protests, like in neighbouring Egypt, the social networking website was blocked on Saturday and Internet connections patchy, said Internet users in Tripoli and Benghazi.

Arbor Networks, a US-based tracker of online traffic, said Internet services were cut overnight.

But the capital itself remained calm on Saturday, a correspondent in Tripoli said, as state television and the official news agency JANA restricted their coverage to reports of pro-regime rallies.

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This article was posted: Saturday, February 19, 2011 at 8:19 am







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