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Sunday, January 8, 2012

Khamis Brigade Shed Massacre: Khaled Khalef Khebir

January 9, 2011
last edits Feb. 20 
(misspelled name changed: Kheiber to Khebir)

<< The Tripoli Massacres
      << The Khamis Brigade Shed Massacre

This post will deal with Khaled Khalef Khebir, an ambiguously connected character seen amongst the charred remains in the massacre shed behind the Yarmouk military base, south of Tripoli. These cinder-crusted skeletons, despite the mass of dubious evidence to the contrary, were likely of some part of the Khamis Brigade who had held the base until, apparently, August 23 the given date of the massacre. Largely black men would have been selected for on-site execution, a usual tactic of the Misrata brigades, and the bodies left un-charred around the shed are in fact primarily of brutally executed black males.

Inside the shed, identities were burned away, and among these carbonized corpses, on August 28, this man with the unfortunate initials K.K.K. was filmed by France 24 hugging another man and apparently laughing amongst their enemies. (0:20 in this video, posted Aug. 28)

But the too-many survivors, some self-described family of those who died, and too many other witnesses clarify these were not Gaddafi soldiers but their victims. And it really is funny how similar laughing and crying are. The narrator clarifies he's crying and in deep pain over the loss of his dear brother in this inferno. I don't understand spoken French, but Contributor Hurriya does a bit, and offered this translation, with no guarantees:
As will become more clear, this Khaled is apparently the same man I had listed as an alleged escapee from the shed massacre, formerly #12 on the big witness list. I'll move him to a new "maybe" category on the next edit. The original entry said:
12 – Khaled Khalef Kheiber
Euronews filed on an August 27 visit on a witness who, through a third party, apparently claims to be an escapee whose brother wasn’t so lucky.

Khaled Khalef Khebir says his brother Abdulkhalim is one of the dead. “They disappeared five months ago and had been transferred from one place to another,” another man explained.[EU]
That was never the strongest case for inclusion, resting on "they disappeared," suggesting perhaps the brothers Abdulkhalim and Khaled, and on his apparent direct knowledge of his brother's fate. After only four days, how could he be sure his brother hadn't escaped but simply hadn't managed to reach home yet? This report also suggested whoever "they" were were arrested back in March. But the France 24 report said mid-June, and only mentioned the one brother.

It's possible these are two separate sets of brothers, with the one named Khaled surviving. Otherwise, I consider it more likely these are the same and will proceed with that notion.

A more recent find explains how Khaled knew his brother had been taken there and probably died there, if not having been there with him. Richard Spencer, for the Telegraph, Aug 28, used a different family name spelling, and a different name for the dead brother - Abdulhakim vs. Abdulkhalim. I thought I heard Khaled mention, to France 24, Suq al-Juma, the Tripoli neighborhood. Spencer says "Mr Kabir believed his brother's only crime was to come from Souq al-Jumaa, a rebellious suburb which was one of the first areas to rise up." Speaking of an escapee, Spencer wrote in part:
Abdulhakim Khadifa Kabir might have tried the same, his brother Khaled said, but he was almost certainly too sick to make the attempt. 
He was seized at a roadblock on June 18. From a released detainee, he knew his brother was still alive 20 days ago [Aug 7], but very weak.
By this, any knowledge of his brother exact fate was second-hand information. "They" apparently does not refer to the two brothers. Who it does refer to isn't clear.

Spencer also mentioned in the Telegraph how "he [Khaled Kabir] pointed to the corner where inmates had been strung up to be whipped." Maybe he learned that too from the the same released inmate. And perhaps that was the eminent judge who served time there with Abdulwhatever. As Spencer explained,
The shed's inmates were certainly a motley collection. Mr Kabir was a casual labourer. Tucked in alongside him was a judge, Abdul Hadi Abusheiwa, arrested in May because of his ties to Mustafa Abdul Jalil, the head of the rebels' National Transitional Council. He was released in July, but had returned to see what happened afterwards.
He could hardly then testify to Mr. Kabir's status on August 7. Unless it was through someone else, perhaps. Justice Abusheiwa could be the source of Khaled's claims, but either way, he's of potential interest as well, and will get his own post later.

Khaled is apparently the same person all around, I could scrap him from the witness list altogether. However, the Euronews story (suggesting he was detained with his brother, back in March) was different enough from the France 24 one the next day (With Abdulwhatever alone arrested in mid-June) that it's possible he was at one point trying to pass himself of as an escapee. Someone perhaps tipped him off that they had enough, so the next day he returned to clarify the record.


  1. Adam.
    The France24 and Euronews videos share some footage, (start of France24 and end of Euronews) and have the same actors, so one must assume the filming was done the same day. (time or day, Petri?)
    What I notice is
    a} no Salim
    b} the presence of the mysterious whispy bearded man with the pale checker scarf and striped shirt and free libya band on his left wrist. I suspect he may be a French speaker and is responsible for the 'tour' that day and rehearsing the performers.
    In the Euronews video his arm is seen showing the team into the prison van at 0.47.
    He's seen at 0.38 sharing a joke with his audience in the France24 video

    Now, where is that quality photo of the curly haired man with the scarf??

  2. Footage?I don't know if I'd seen that. I was going off the article linked. Searching videos, it comes up as a video, but when I click, the same -an articlewith one video still and no player. I guess because I am not "Euro" enough.

    So, thanks for the link to the one that'd be harder to find. Indeed, all the same day.

  3. The Euronews video with french commentary showing KKK is here , uploaded by hichamnet84 on 28 August

  4. Yeah, that's what I was saying thanks for. But having it twice doesn't hurt.

    I just noticed in it, 0:13, a spot of interest - a body not burnt to the bone, much flesh remaining, even clothes maybe, esp. at hands and feet (ribs visible). Left Hand frozen up in a defensive posture I've seen before with one-on-one execution. Not hiding in the corner from random bullets and grenades. When I study these bodies (soon now), that's a big clue. The corner and edge bodies were executed on site, the middle pile dumped from trucks.

  5. @Adam - KKK is also interviewed by Janine di Giovanni of the Daily Beast sometime before October 17 2011 - My Walk Through the Valley of Death. She visits the shed "a few weeks later" The brother is described as a Beekeper with a Bee Farm near Bani Walid, stopped a check point in Souq al-Juma. Apparently,returning from his bees. The dead brother is given as Abdulhakim Khaditha al-Kabir who sure enough doesn't appear in the list of victims...

  6. and as posted on the Charred Victims Imagery page, KKK did a stunning performance for Turkish TRT Haber Libya'dan dehşet görüntüler!, (Terrfying images from Libya) Also at YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CTP6mgdGc4

  7. Robert Worth in the NYT, 27 August 2011, Rebel Government Struggles to Restore Water and Power in Tripoli also has the story of the judge, name slightly mis-translated...
    Abdul Hadi Abu Shahayna, a Tripoli judge who said he was held at the facility, said the other prisoners included lawyers, other judges and engineers — opposition figures, but also regular people caught up in a post-uprising sweep. Judge Abu Shahayna said he was arrested on May 25 and held until July 10 with a group that fluctuated in size between 70 and 100 people.

    1. Sorry, author was David D Kirkpatrick with extra reporting by Robert F Worth.

  8. Khaled Khalef Khebir has a strange resemblance to a Salem Hamed Forjani interviewed in English by Global Post in Sirte in October on this video at 2:15:
    Sirte falls, Libya looks to future

    I cannot confirm or deny if he is the same person.

  9. @Caustic - KKK's big hugs friend is called Usama Treki, as noted in this picture by a new photographer to me at the shed, Heathcliff O'Malley for the Sunday Telegraph. Photos here and also at the dry river bed behind the mosque are dated Saturday 27 August.

    1. This on in the set is interesting:
      The Fall of Tripoli (22/60)
      Sco0033837 . Daily Telegraph.. A rebel guard walks through a corridor of empty cells in the Foreign Intelligence Bureau Headquarters in Tripoli...Tripoli 28 August 2011.

      The BBC team held at the shed compound on March 8, 2011 say they were then taken to headquarters of the foreign intelligence service somewhre near the airport i.e. in Qasr bin Ghashir.
      They were driven to a building that was much cleaner and seemed better organised. They believe it was the headquarters of the foreign intelligence service.

    2. Chris Guarino @cvguarino
      #TRIPOLI : Foreign intelligence bureau in Salah Eldine has been bombed Tonight. Technically, there should be no more jamming on channels!
      4:50 AM - 31 Mar 11

    3. http://i41.tinypic.com/2a5i43p.jpg
      the gloves are for protecting hands while firing heavy anti-aircraft weapons such as the shilka.

  10. @Petri - Usama Treki leads me to this source of pictures at RexUSA(only thumbnails) including an interesting maggot photo. Need to look if they have been used anywhere else...some are new, but include O'Malley's.

    1. felix , what an excellent finds!

      1 of the photo's shows a new dr with his [black] brother found in the wadi :


      Dr Nasser Awaeidat with the bagged up body of his brother Mohammed Awaeidat 27 Aug 2011

      could not find another trace of him on internet, also not when write the name as awadat. maybe y can?

    2. @ felix : don't know y have found :


    3. Might be Aweida, but doesn't check out. Unlikely anyway - I thought all these bodies were black. More fakery. Also Rex in UK.

  11. The O'Malley photos are at Hungarian site PuzzlePix, which also has a selection of Paul Conroy photos from the Khamis base and its weapons stores. Which base is this? The 27th mile west? Oddly some of these photos, dated 21 and 22 Aug do not appear on Conroy's own ReflexTV Battle for Tripoli page.

    1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUr0yEqvoe8
      tripoli brigade looting yarmouk weapon depot
      [skinny beardman, compagnon hatari and whispy beard]
      @ felix : tripoli brigade and misrata brigade together in yarmouk weapon shed!!!!

      On Sunday August 21st, anti-Gaddafi forces [tripoli brigade] entered Tripoli after six months of fighting

      Many of the rebels in and around the compound had arrived from Misrata using the road through Ghayan, south of Tripoli.
      @ 0.19 entering tripoli south east, 21 aug

    2. @Hurriya - who is Tripoli Brigade in the vid?

    3. BTW Hesna Al-Ghaoui for Hungarian TV http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsqe1oTA_RA Tripoli - 2011.08.28. visited exactly the same weapons shed again the next day with the Misrata brigade. i.e. it is a journalists' photo opp, just as the Khamis shed was. Check the ceiling at 2.21 (Al-Ghaoui) and 0.41 (Euronews the previous day). Identical.

    4. @ felix : the beardman next to yr fituri. this was long time our miscommunication : y had yr eye on the grey beard, me on the mate of hatari.

      looking at the vid above @ 1.26 I see the hole so small I never can believe so many men could escape through it.

      and before the photo opp :
      22 August
      In the morning, Agence France-Press reported that fighting was ongoing near the residence of Colonel Gaddafi and in the south of the city

    5. could this be a fituri relative ?

      At the Tripoli Military Council offices located next to the city’s small Mitiga airport - recently retaken from the government by the Suq Al Juma brigade - Col. Yazin Fituri says, ..

    6. @Hurriya - re Tripoli Brigade. Did you see this fascinating France24 film? 16 mins, FRANCE 24 Reporters: Muammar Gaddafi - The Tripoli Brigade (part 2) ?? So, who appointed "camera shy" Belhaj?? His employers??


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