Libyan Journalists Released After Nine-Day Standoff

Misrata Troops Didn't Invade Bani Walid, as Threatened

A pair of Libyan journalists, either arrested or kidnapped depending on which official is talking about them, have finally been released Monday after nine days in captivity in the town of Bani Walid.

The journalists were captured by the faction that sees itself as the Bani Walid local government, and they were accused of illegally entering the town and illegally filming “military zones” around the town.

Since the journalists are from Misrata, and the Misratan militia sacked Bani Walid in the waning days of the Libyan Civil War, battle lines were quickly drawn, and the Misrata forces threatened a new invasion to save the journalists from “Gadhafi loyalists.”

The invasion never came, and the journalists are released. But the message is clear that being a journalist in the new Libya is a very dangerous thing indeed, and the idea that you can safely travel outside of your own little enclave is still mere fantasy for post-war Libyans.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.