By Tom Westcott.
Tripoli, 5 September 2013:
A man said to be high on drink and drugs was apprehended early this morning after . . .[restrict]grabbing a kalashnikov and opening fire near the Mahari Radisson Blu Hotel.
“About eight or ten bullets hit the front of the building, damaging three windows, two cars and the reception desk,” said a spokesman for the hotel. “But no staff were injured and hotel security were not involved.” He added that it was in no way a political incident but was rather the unfortunate result of a drunk person getting hold of a gun.
A guest said that he watched everything from his hotel room. “The man looked really out of it,” he told the Libya Herald, “he couldn’t walk straight.” The guest added that the man had threatened hotel security but that they did not want to shoot him because he was in such a poor state, so they chased him away.
Reports suggest that the man was eventually apprehended with some degree of violence and a guest said that he thought the man had been shot in the leg.
A 33 year-old man was admitted to the Accident and Emergency department of Hadba hospital this morning, bleeding heavily from a gunshot wound to the leg. He was later transferred to the Intensive Care Unit under police guard and is now understood to be in a stable condition.
This turned out not to be the only piece of excitement at the hotel today. This evening when a aviolent storm moved in from the west, with heavy rain and extremely strong squalls, a number of the plate glass windows separating the rear garden from the coffee area, were blown in. None was broken but chairs and tables were sent flying and glass tops smashed.
This was not the storm’s only impact on the hotel. One of the three large plate glass windows at the front of the building, which were holed and weakened by the drunken attacker, was also blown in by an extremely strong gust of wind.
A hotel spokesman told the Libya Herald: “We are already working on clearing up the damage and we should be back to normal business by midnight”. In fact, it was back to normal much earlier. [/restrict]