Source: The AustralianHundreds of Libyans shot down
John Lyons, Middle East correspondent
February 21, 2011
ANTI-GOVERNMENT demonstrations across North Africa and the Middle East were violently put down at the weekend, with hundreds of Libyans believed dead after security forces opened fire with machineguns on protesters. The worst violence was in Libya's second-largest city, Benghazi, where soldiers and police used live ammunition to fire on crowds demanding an end to the 41-year rule of Muammar Gaddafi. The exact toll of the crackdown was unclear but human rights groups believed as many as 200 people had been killed in Libya.
One Benghazi resident told Sky News it had been a "terrible, terrible night". He said thousands of protesters had spent the night facing off with security forces and he expected them to continue. "He (Colonel Gaddafi) has to look for an aeroplane or a place to receive him," he said. A Libyan doctor said security forces had blocked ambulances from reaching the clashes, and he had personally seen 70 bodies at one hospital in Benghazi.
A television reporter in Egypt (NBC News) said that he talked to a resident of Tripoli by telephone this morning. The resident told him that numerous buildings in Tripoli are burning and there are many many dead lying in the streets.