By Noora Ibrahim and Moutaz Ahmed.
Benghazi, 5 July 2014:
A video purporting to show a captured member of Ansar Al-Sharia admitting during . . .[restrict]interrogation to having murdered a number of people in Benghazi in return for payment by the organisation is authentic, the head of Operation Dignity’s air forces has claimed.
Air Force Brigadier-General Saqr Adam Geroushi, who until January last year was chief of staff of the Libyan Air Force, said that the man seen being interrogated in the recording was just one of a number of members of Ansar who had been caught since Operation Dignity was launched.
“We have a lot of them,” he said, adding that they included a senior Ansar leader.
The video, which appeared on a number of TV channels, shows an evidently frightened young man, said to have been arrested in Marj, admitting to six killings. Intially, he stated, he was not paid but later was given between LD 1,500 and LD 2,000 per killing. He also said that there were many in Ansar who were not Libyan. He mentioned Algerians, Tunisians and Afghans.
Geroushi similarly claimed today that among members of Ansar who had been captured there were Algerians and Tunsians.
He would not, however, give names or numbers of those caught.
In confident mood, he said the reason why there was less apparent action at present in Benghazi was because it was Ramadan and Operation Dignity wanted to try and avoid killing in the holy month.
But Ansar were becoming weaker, he declared. They were running out of ammunition and funds and some of them, he said, had asked to negotiate with Operation Dignity forces.
“We refused. We will not do it,” he insisted.
Ansar has made no statement about the video. [/restrict]