African migrants, captured and jailed by the rebels they were fighting in Libya’s Western Mountains, say they were tricked or coerced into the army of Moammar Gadhafi in the belief they faced an al-Qaeda invasion.
In rare first-hand accounts from a group branded “mercenaries” by the rebels, five men from Sudan’s western Darfur region and Chad told Reuters how they were working in Libya as builders and decorators when they became embroiled in the conflict unleashed by an uprising to end Mr. Gadhafi’s four-decade rule.
They spoke last week at a makeshift jail in a secondary school in the rebel-held town of Zintan. They have had no contact with their families or aid groups, and medical workers in the town say they have had only limited access to the men.
Some of what they said about their treatment in the prison appeared aimed at pleasing their captors. At one point, a guard outside the cell loaded two cartridges into a double-barrelled shotgun and motioned as if to shoot the prisoners. Read more