By Libya Herald reporters.
Tripoli, 4 August 2015:
A video has surfaced on the internet showing what appears like prison guards ill-treating prisoners at . . .[restrict]the Al Hadba prison in Tripoli.
This included the scenes of Saadi Qaddafi, son of the former Libyan dictator, being slapped and beaten.
Al Hadba prison on the southern edge of the Al-Hadba district of Tripoli is where all the top ex-Qaddafi regime members, with the exception of Saif Al-Islam Qaddafi, are believed to be held.
The video has caused a storm as the Al-Hadba prison is not under the control of the internationally recognized government based in the east of Libya, but is under the control of forces of the Islamist and former deputy defence Minister Khalid Sharif.
Sharif was surprisingly removed from his position as deputy Defence Minister in January by the Tripoli-based GNC-Libya Dawn administration of Omar Al-Hassi.
Sharif, a former commander of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) in Afghanistan who was captured in Pakistan in 2003 and sent back to Libya where Qaddafi jailed him, was given the post in Ali Zeidan’s government.
He retained the role when his boss as defence minister, Al-Thinni, became Prime Minister. After the latter’s internationally-recognised government moved to Beida in August, Sharif remained in the capital, working under the Tripoli-based “government” created by a group of members of the former parliament, the General National Congress, and headed by Omar Al-Hassi.
It is not clear yet if the video is genuine or a creation meant to incite a reaction.
The appearance of the video comes on the back of the death sentences passed by a Tripoli court on 28 July given to Saif Al-Islam Qaddafi, Abdullah Senussi and seven other leading former regime figures.
The death sentences triggered a number of demonstrations against them both within and outside Libya.
The death sentences were widely condemned as flawed and unfair.