Tripoli, 7 August:
Details are emerging about the SSC’s operation against suspected pro-Qaddafi operatives last week in which three of them were . . .[restrict]killed during a raid on a farm near Aziziya.
The SSC believes that those killed — originally reported as three men but now said to be two men and a woman — were linked to a series of attempted terror attacks in Tripoli in recent weeks.
According to Abdurrauf Karah, commander of Suq Al-Juma SSC special forces team which was involved in the raid, the three killed in the farm shootout were a suspected Qaddafi military operative, Salah Buhmaidah, and his parents. His brother, Khaled, also said to be involved in the shootout, managed to escape. He is being sought.
The raid followed the capture last week of another Qaddafi operative, Khairi Al-Jermi. Orginally from Tarhouna and a prominent figure in the Qaddafi forces in Suq Al-Juma during the revolution, he fled to Tunisia. However, it is said that he has been entering and leaving the country in past months, trying to set up counter-revolution cells in Tarhouna, Ben Gashir and elsewhere, intent on carrying out attacks and destabilising the country. Karah said Jermi was a major fifth-column figure and claimed he had been in contact with Saadi Qaddafi in Niger.
Following a top-off from a reliable source, Jermi was caught on Saturday in Ben Gashir, near Tripoli International Airport. The SSC commander said he did not resist arrest. Karah also claimed that he was being helped by his family at the time and was trying to hide by dressing as a woman.
According to Karah, Jermi is said to have admitted to a number of plots, including involvement in the car explosion in Tripoli’s Rasheed street on Saturday, said to be a car bomb.
Jermi was also reported to have confessed that a man called Salah Buhmaidah was the mastermind behind the attacks and knew how to make remote controlled bombs. He had provided Buhmaidah with the detonators.
Having revealed that Buhmaidah was hiding at a farm in Al-Zahira, near Aziziya, the SSC took him with them to identify the location. Karah said that when they arrived, Buhmaidah started shooting with a machine gun. His mother was using a 9mm pistol, his father a Kalashnikov.
However, according to a statement put out on Facebook by the Suq Al-Juma team, it was the father who started shooting with his Kalashnikov when they arrived, and only after they killed him did Buhmaidah come out with the machine gun and started shooting. After he was killed they entered the house and were confronted by the mother, pistol in hand, who shot at them. The page she managed to injure one of the men in his right side before she was shot in the leg. She fell but did not surrender and when she continued shooting, she was shot dead.
The Facebook page also says that Jermi admitted to plans to attack Tripoli’s Radisson Mahari hotel.
After the shootout, some eight bombs were found — of the same type as the bomb in Rasheed Street, Karah said. The Facebook page says that documents were also found detailing communications with Qaddafi regime figures in Tunisia, one of whom was said to be called Mizughi, and with others in a cell in Ben Gashir.