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Chaos and Hysteria as Thousands Try to Leave Libya [VIDEO]

Chaos and Hysteria as Thousands Try to Leave Libya [VIDEO]

Chaos reigns at the Tripoli airport as people—including thousands of migrant workers from sub-Saharan Africa and Asia—try to flee Libya. At least 26 nations are seeking to get their citizens out safely. Evacuees describes ‘mass hysteria’ at the airport where as many as 10,000 people attempted—are fighting, as the Guardian says—to get out.

 

A plane chartered by the oil company BP brought 78 people to Gatwick Airport in England on Thursday. Another aircraft was stuck in England and only got to Tripoli early Thursday morning. It picked up 132 people and flew to Malta, where 51 more boarded the plane. Six people who made it to the UK are interviewed by the BBC and describe harrowing scenes from the Tripoli airport. Ewan Black, an IT support worker for an oil company, describes losing his luggage and ‘”literally bodies climbing over bodies to get to the door.”‘ Bryan Richards, an oil worker, says:

“This was manic. Your worst nightmare of pop concerts and football hooligans all mixed into one. It was unbelievable.

If you can imagine an area the size of the Wembley pitch full of people and luggage, all trying to move in one direction but not going anywhere. And no-one else can move either.  

It was manic, unbelievably manic, mayhem. No sanitation. Nothing to eat. People have been there for days.”

In Benghazi, a British navy frigate with 200 people, 68 of them British, was delayed due to bad weather. People are taking whatever means they can, from Turkish ferries to a US ferry in Tripoli, to leave. The US ferry, with 285 passengers on board (167 of them Americans including 40 members of the US Embassy staff) has been stranded in the harbor in Tripoli due to eight-meter swells. Passengers are unable to leave the boat and being given food and water. 

The US State Department estimates that about 6,000 Americans, most holding dual citizenship, were in Libya when the uprising against Muammar Qaddafi began.

But as the New York Times reports, getting out of Libya is even more challenging for migrant workers, many of whom simply do not have the funds to get back home:

Jemini Pandya, a spokeswoman for the International Organization for Migration, said at least 30,000 people, mainly Tunisian and Egyptian migrant workers, fled violence in Libya from Monday to Wednesday.

Drawn by jobs in Libya’s booming construction industry and rich oil fields, as many as 1.5 million migrants were working in Libya when the violence began, according to Ms. Pandya’s group.

Officials in Italy, France, Spain, Greece, Malta and Cyprus have asked the European Union for special funds to deal with an anticipated mass influx of refugees. Italy and Greece, as the New York Times says, are the most likely points of destination for many of the refugees; both countries have huge debt and economic crises that render them something less than able to handle what Defense Minister Ignazio La Russa of Italy has referred to as migrations ‘”on a biblical scale.”‘

 

Previous Care2 Coverage

Gaddafi Blames Uprising On Osama Bin Laden; Says Al Qaeda Drugging Libyan Youth (VIDEO)

Libyan Opposition Gains Greater Control; Mercenaries Roam Tripoli With Orders To Shoot; U.S. Tries To Evacuate Citizens (VIDEO)

World Leaders React To Gaddafi’s TV Address; Update On Protests In Bahrain, Yemen, Algeria and Egypt

In Televison Address, Gaddafi Vows To Fight On And “Die A Martyr”

Gaddafi’s Grip on Libya Weakens; EU Fears Mass Influx of African Migrants [VIDEO]

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Photo: screenshot of the exodus to leave Libra via TelLieVision1's channel.

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43 comments

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6:53AM PDT on May 27, 2011

thanks for the info

5:09AM PST on Mar 6, 2011

Saddam Hussein wasn't a nice man and neither is Col Ghaddafi.However,what they managed to do was keep the tribes in their countries under control and living in some sort of "harmony".Unfortunately you need a dictator to do this!Democracy in tribal fundamentalist Islamic countries is a "pipe-dream".Who is arming and stirring up these "anti Ghaddafi"forces who have suddenly erupted into action?Any bets on the USA and its allies and covert operators?Why?OIL that's why!!!The USA and its oil-hungry "allies"are going to take down one by one,these "benevolent"dictators to get their oil and the suffering of the people is just collateral damage.No wonder the Colonel is fighting back and turning on those who he would see as traitors to the relative peace that has existed in Libya.He knows exactly what is going on regarding the US interference in his sovereign country but then the US has been out to get Ghaddafi ever since Lockerbie.By the way,there was never any conclusive proof that this horror air disaster was ever initiated by Libya!?I believe that so called "state sponsored terrorism"is happening in the Middle East",to keep those countries in chaos while their oil is quietly plundered!And it is not the governments of those countries that are initiating these activities!Why doesn't the USA "sort out"Mugabe? (what a monster!)NO OIL!!!

5:05AM PST on Mar 6, 2011

Saddam Hussein wasn't a nice man and neither is Col Ghaddafi.However,what they managed to do was keep the tribes in their countries under control and living in some sort of "harmony".Unfortunately you need a dictator to do this!Democracy in tribal fundamentalist Islamic countries is a "pipe-dream".Who is arming and stirring up these "anti Ghaddafi"forces who have suddenly erupted into action?Any bets on the USA and its allies and covert operators?Why?OIL that's why!!!The USA and its oil-hungry "allies"are going to take down one by one,these "benevolent"dictators to get their oil and the suffering of the people is just collateral damage.No wonder the Colonel is fighting back and turning on those who he would see as traitors to the relative peace that has existed in Libya.He knows exactly what is going on regarding the US interference in his sovereign country but then the US has been out to get Ghaddafi ever since Lockerbie.By the way,there was never any conclusive proof that this horror air disaster was ever initiated by Libya!?I believe that so called "state sponsored terrorism"is happening in the Middle East",to keep those countries in chaos while their oil is quietly plundered!And it is not the governments of those countries that are initiating these activities!Why doesn't the USA "sort out"Mugabe? (what a monster!)NO OIL!!!

5:11AM PST on Feb 28, 2011

Muammar Qaddafi wants power just like Hitler, Churchill or Stalin to place himself as a hero into recent history books like some others, all will go to hell. They all and others in history will eventually go down simply as murderers including so called winners. The winners want to dictate, the so called losers actually won, look at Germany and Japan. At least they did this in style, never looking back. I cannot see the Middle East doing that, they will self destruct, fighting each other to the death that is exactly what Muammar Qaddafi is doing now. History, he will only be remembered for Lockerbie the murder of civilians, he will not even be remembered for killing his own people, sadly. But he killed more of his own than Lockerbie or any other place. I call him Satan, actually Satan believes in GOD, he does not, Hitler, Churchill or Stalin did exactly the same on a larger scale. In 100 years nobody will remember Qaddafi, but they will remember Hitler, Churchill, Stalin and Eisenhower, their names will stink for eternity, may GOD be the judge.

12:41AM PST on Feb 28, 2011

Our prayers are with those people who are unable to get out if Libya hope International organization do some thing to help these people

9:53AM PST on Feb 27, 2011

Just few months back UN Human Right ,praised Gaddafi and now what changed their mind so quick? Another UN bungle? UN is a joke, and must be disbanded for good.

9:04PM PST on Feb 26, 2011

Madeline KM, there is an old saying: 'God helps those who helps themselves'.Pretty well sums up what you said. Though these unfortunate people are going to need help from elsewhere as well.

Gaddafi is not going to give in as easily as the Egyptian leader. My thoughts and prayers are with them anyway.

12:50AM PST on Feb 26, 2011

Thanks for the info.

11:57PM PST on Feb 25, 2011

I can't express how insulted I feel when people say that we should be praying to God to stop this violence.

I am all for putting out good thoughts to the world, but it is just ridiculous what some people suggest. As if the citizens of the world haven't been praying to Gods for thousands of years for things to get better which have not gotten better simply as a result of prayer.

What makes change is being active and going out and DOING things, not sitting in your home in America or wherever you are and hoping for something to change. It is such a cop-out, and it's way too easy.

Again, I think it is a wonderful thing to think good thoughts and believe that sometimes this can do good, but to pray to "God" (whoever that is supposed to be)to take the guns from the "madman" is just a silly thing to say.

People taking action saves lives and changes the world, not people praying passively (unless they're doing it publically as a protest).

"God" is a cosmic process. It does not judge or change things at will. It is a magical thing through which all happens, but it does not favour some more than others nor wish vengance or salvation for certain people. It needs a new name, and people need to start believing in the power of themselves as creations of this magical process, not the power of the process alone.

Martin Luther King both loved God and realized that action was necessary. I hope others will realize this, too.

9:58PM PST on Feb 25, 2011

God.

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Kristina Chew Kristina Chew teaches ancient Greek, Latin and Classics at Saint Peter's University in New Jersey.... more
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