CNN: Alleged rape victim flees to Tunisia

2011-05-09 21:16

Paris/Tunis - A Libyan woman who burst into a hotel housing foreign journalists in Tripoli in March and claimed she had been gang-raped by Muammar Gaddafi's troops has escaped to Tunisia, CNN reported on Monday.

Iman al-Obeidi, who was whisked by government officials from the hotel after being physically obstructed from telling her story, told CNN she had fled across the border by car with defecting Libyan military officers.

"It was a little hard, there were checkpoints and the brigades [military]," she told CNN.

CNN reported that she was taken to the French embassy in Tunis.

Television footage of al-Obeidi's arrival at the Tripoli hotel, looking dishevelled and distraught, and the brutal reaction of government officials and hotel staff who fought back journalists trying to interview her, led to worldwide condemnation of Gaddafi's regime and petitions for her release.

A Libyan government spokesperson at the time claimed she seemed to have mental problems, but the regime later said it was investigating her claims.

She was released within three days but said she was repeatedly harassed by officials and government supporters over the hotel incident.

Al-Obeidi, whose parents live in the rebel-controlled eastern town of Tobruk, said she had left Libya because she did not feel safe.

  • slg - 2011-05-10 01:34

    The most shocking and sickening thing was that waitress who bagged her, while she was in the restaurant. Deeply disturbing.

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