Ashraf Abdul Wahab.
Tripoli 12 July 2013:
There is confusion that the Mitiga . . .[restrict]Airbase prison, officially handed over with much ceremony at the end of last month to the Military Police, appears still to be in the hands of the Supreme Security Committee (SSC) Tripoli.
Doubts about the reality of the handover emerged with photographs of a group of prisoners said to have been Qaddafi snipers. These men were supposed to have escaped. To disprove the allegations, pictures of the men were published which clearly show the logo of the SSC Tripoli.
The decision to turn the facility over to the Military Police as a military prison was made in the middle of June, after a meeting between the head of the military police, Mokhtar Fernana, Hashim Bishr, head of SSC Tripoli, and Haithem Tajouri, commander of the first special reinforcement unit.
Bishr at the time told the Libya Herald: “Eighty percent of the prisoners belong to military whilst the remaining 20 percent are civilians but have committed crimes like murder, robbery and the like.” He said that the civilians would be transferred to civil jails in coordination with the Attorney General, once the handover was completed.
The SSC came to guard and operate the prison after a formal request from the Ministry of Interior.
The SSC has, however, long been accused of torturing prisoners there, something which Bishr and his colleagues deny. [/restrict]