Mass grave of over 1,200 found in Tripoli

Reuters/Suhaib Salem

A mass grave containing the bodies of over 1,000 prisoners killed by security forces in a 1996 massacre has been found, according to officials of Libya’s new government.


The remains of 1,200 people have been discovered at the site, medical official Dr Osman Abdul Jalil said. Another official, talking to the AFP news agency, put the figure at 1,700.

International report: One man's tale of Kadhafi's jail

They are believed to be the victims of a massacre at Tripoli’s Abou Salim prison. The slaughter was the response of Moamer Kadhafi’s regime to a revolt by prisoners, many of them members of Islamist groups and other political dissidents. 

Human rights groups believe that they were killed in the space of two hours by grenades and machine guns.

The former government said that an organisation called the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group was behind the uprising and that 200 guards were killed.


Investigators found the site about two weeks ago, a spokesperson for the Tripoli Military Council told RFI.

The interim government has set up a committee to identify the remains and have appealed for international help.

Daily newsletterReceive essential international news every morning