BENGHAZI, Libya (AP) - Dozens of detained rebels returned Friday
on a Red Cross ship to their eastern stronghold, detailing how they
were tortured at the hands of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi's
The ship carrying 51 prisoners also brought back 249 people who
wanted be reunited with family in eastern Libya, Red Cross
spokeswoman Deepa Fakhir said. It was not immediately clear whether there had been a prisoner swap with the Gadhafi government.
"They electrocuted us, they tortured us in every possible
way," said Yousef al-Fetori, who had been detained in the capital
of Tripoli. "They broke my ribs, hand and leg."
The Red Cross spokeswoman denied that there were any prisoners
from Benghazi being swapped on board.
However, a spokesman for the rebels' transitional government
said five prisoners had previously been sent back to Tripoli,
though the rebels had not been aware the Red Cross was returning
people to Benghazi.
The Libyan rebels began their uprising four months ago against
Gadhafi, who has been in power since 1969. The conflict has turned
into a civil war, and Gadhafi's forces are accused of orchestrating
deadly attacks on civilians.
A coalition including France, Britain and the United States
began striking Gadhafi's forces under a United Nations resolution
to protect civilians on March 19. NATO assumed control of the air
campaign over Libya on March 31 and is joined by a number of Arab
The rebels have taken over much of the eastern half of Libya.
They also control pockets in the west, including the vital port
city of Misrata, about 125 miles (200 kilometers) from the capital
Judges at the International Criminal Court in The Hague,
Netherlands, have said they will rule Monday on whether to order
A warrant would turn Gadhafi into an internationally wanted war
crimes suspect at risk of detention if he traveled to ICC member
states. However, the ICC has no police force and relies on
participating countries to arrest suspects.
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