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Friday, February 3, 2012

Shed Massacre Witnesses: Moktar Mahmoud Zedan

February 3, 2012

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One of our more recent escapee discoveries is Moktar Mahmoud Zedan, as given in a French news site La-Croix, August 30. Auto-translated and slightly tweaked:
Moktar Mahmoud Zedan owes his survival to the mercy of a guard. "He let me go while the soldiers, short of ammunition, went to reload," he said. The young man ran to a farm several miles away.

Unrelated, I thought, an amateur cell phone video uploaded to Youtube Aug. 28 by 123VivaAlgerieNew had shown us what seems to be more survivors reuniting at the scene. The main one seen (at left) is light-skinned, clean-shaven, and wears a baseball cap. The combination really makes me think Indiana, not Libya. But it really is a place of amazing racial diversity. First seen at 1:32, he speaks at length in Arabic of his ordeal. He seems to have lost several shirt buttons in the slaughter, but shows no sign of injury otherwise. He seems to speak of the many cities the other prisoners had been dragged there from.

He's also seen embracing other escapees who seem to be Ibrahim Omar Zadan (relation?) and Bashir el-Sedik/Siddeq, and another possible survivor, unnamed.

But there was another, apparently original posting of this video we missed 'til later. Posted by ZlitenHorra, the title translates to "Survivors of the massacre of the Yarmouk camp telling details of the massacre." Petri Krohn noticed the main survivor named in the description translates to "Mahmoud Mukhtar Zadam" ("مختار محمود الزدام"). He then found along account More on Facebook: (auto-ranslated from Arabic, goofy parts and all)

Yarmouk Prison massacre
Mahmoud Mukhtar Zadam, born in 1988, a resident of the city of Zliten, was arrested on Friday, 6/17/2011 AD. Mokhtar was arrested by some of the volunteers in the city of Zliten, with some of his cousins ​​for being a family Zadam, which was attended by some of her children in the events of June 9 , and the time of his arrest, such as prayer Alfjrandma was going to a bakery, and was taking him and his next to the restaurant skill near a mosque boys Ahamada, under the pretext that they want to ask him about some things, and there was forced to put precordia was threatened with weapons, and called him a traitor and " rat ", and then transferred to the island rotation center of the city, and there are known Alybed of volunteers and members of the battalion who were of the support which the tyrant, and the number was about 15 people, struck by them, as was insulting and cursing.
Then he made some of the members of the battalion interrogated him and with him about their relationship martyr Tariq Ahamada, he denied he and those with any connection to him a martyr, struck and the transfer of the puppies to the headquarters of the military police Mqidaomasob eyes, and upon arrival found a number of prisoners, who led them bad luck to the prison.
*** ***
At 10:00 AM / Friday.
Transfer selected for interrogation, blindfolded, and the investigator - as mentioned - the city of Zliten, where certain than that of the tone and style of the investigator, as well as by the investigator to identify the very "selected" which was the same name "selected", where he told the mayor: The grandfather is a good man, but you and your father (.....).
Try investigator struggling to lure Muktar to make any confession, and threatened that he will kill him without mercy if it is proved that accused him, but the mayor was adamant about his denial to the charge of participating in the case of "the events of 9 June", said the investigator that he was ready to die if any investigator single piece of evidence on his claim.
Questions and the longer the investigation and there were many ways to the investigator, and was among those asked about his relationship is also Tariq Ahamada, answered them that you mean the life of the martyr Tariq Ahamada? They beat him and said to him: Say: "carrion Tariq" O (....).

*** ***

Eventually selected and transferred to a room with metal Talo car, known in Libya as (Sheila), and when you sit in, they heard some of the guards talking about Tripoli and Maj. Gen. 32, the following They knew that their station is the headquarters of Gen. 32.

Mukhtar and his colleagues felt the unknown fate that awaits them as they j their way to Tripoli, and the increased narrowness which was doing the commander of the car that was deliberately harassed and Aivahman malleable intentional leaving the road and right and left bending strongly, even collide with vehicle barriers detainees detention (Sheila).
Then I guess the massacre and miraculous escape will be covered in part 2?

The same name appears on the Facebook list of 40 names "of some of the survivors of massacre Guantanamo Yarmuk." These are in Arabic only, translated by me using Google and other tools.
#40 مختار محمود الزدام - Mahmoud Mukhtar Zadam

Oddly, this same name order, given in the other (translated) internet sources above, is wrong. Google Translate, anyway, does it. But if the Arabic original is anything to go by, and they do write right-to-left, it's Mukhtar Mahmoud Zadam, as given by La-Croix. So I decide this all the same person.

Thanks to Hurriya, another French language source, Belgian news site Lalibre, August (Google translated).
"The skeletons were removed for burial Sunday," said Mahmoud Mokhtar Zedan, 23 years. The serious face, he inspects the four charred walls of the room where he spent more than two months after his arrest in Zliten, June 17, with three other rebels.

The student, who "took up arms in the early days of the revolution," said to have escaped a massacre in the neighborhood of Salahaddin, south of Tripoli. On the evening of August 23, men "dressed in military," he said belonging to the brigade adjacent, open the door of the shed where he wastes away with about 150 inmates. The prisoners are killed "shot", one by one. The authors of the massacre would then set fire to the building by throwing more grenades.
He then ran away, and hid at the home of local Nouri Massoud.


  1. I am not quite sure why Google translates it like that....no. 40 as written above indeed reads "Mukhtar Mahmoud (Al-)Zadam"

    1. Google does not transliterate or even translate. The algorithm is based on the probability of the occurrence of words and phrases in translated texts. (In the end something similar to how neural networks work.) In this case the translation may be skewed by the existence of the Egyptian sculptor Mahmoud Mokhtar.

  2. Witness List local resident nr 5, Abdelmenem Faraj Labani does not link to any article,but perhaps it was on the lost page? It then requires restating that Gert van Langendonck,Tripoli neighbors help frightened survivors after massacre, Christian Science Monitor, CSM, 30 August 2011, noted that For four months, Nouri Massoud listened to the screams coming from the hangar across the street from his house at Khilit al-Ferjan in southeast Tripoli.

    Mr. Massoud lives next to a barracks belonging to the notorious Khamis Brigade, named after the Qaddafi son who leads it.

    “When the NATO bombing started, the barracks were no longer a safe place so the soldiers moved into houses in the neighborhood, and they set up a prison and interrogation center in that hangar,” says Massoud....It was there that a gruesome discovery was made on Saturday, when the fighting had subsided enough for the area’s inhabitants to return. [wrong, from discovered video of August 26..] The neighbors always knew that bad things were happening in the hangar.

    It wasn't just the warning not to use the second floor of their homes. Another neighbor, Abdelmenem Faraj Labani, said he saw two prisoners escape from the hangar 20 days ago. “They were kids, 16 or 17-years old, and they were naked except for their boxer shorts. They hid in a house under construction but the soldiers found them and took them back.”

    In an adjacent house lay another body, which likely belonged to an escaped prisoner who had hidden there and died from his wounds.

    Massoud had taken to spending days at his home, and nights at his mother’s house where he had also put the rest of his family. “I didn’t want them to be so close to a very bad place,” he said.

    When Massoud returned to his house on Wednesday morning, he found three badly wounded people hiding in a storage area under a stairwell in his house. He found four more people hiding in other parts of the house.

    “I gave them water and first aid. Then I checked to see if the coast was clear – the soldiers were still in the barracks – and I helped them escape through the back door.”

    Massoud doesn’t know if the people he helped escape eventually made it to safety.

    Amnesty estimates that around 160 were detained in the hangar, and that at least 23 managed to escape.

    More survivors may turn up. On Saturday, Massoud and his neighbors discovered two escapees who had been hiding in a house since Tuesday, still too afraid to come out.

    So, neighbours of Salem Al-Ferjani, if he is telling the truth. The "adjacent house" body is certainly the one "discovered" suddenly during the visit of Ben Knight of ABC Australia.

  3. An tweet from a British Libyan was an early reference to the Zedan video:

    Zlitniya @Zlitniya
    Eyewitnes frm Zliten:Guards started shooting,then threw 8 grenades.2nd day they burnt bodies.@4.34 men break down http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPDsF0UyhLM&feature=share #Libya
    4:40 PM - 28 Aug 11 via Tweet Button

    EIGHT grenades must be an accurate translation.

    Another early tweet was from Doha, Qatar based Libya TV, with a broken link to its own website.

    Libya TV ‏ @libyatvarabic
    فديو: ناجون من مذبحة معسكر اليرموك يروون تفاصيل المجزرة - ‎‪#libya‬‏ -... ‎http://goo.gl/Wx6SQ‏
    4:42 PM - 28 Aug 11 via WP Tweet Button ·


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