On February 25th, demonstrators gathered outside the Bahrain embassy in London to show solidarity with the Arab people campaigning for greater freedoms in their countries.
Ahmed Abowed, 26 years old, he is from a village between Zawiya and Tripoli. He came to London last year.
“I left my job as a communications engineer in Libya a year ago and came to London. Once here I started working as a cleaner, kitchen porter and now I work as a chef. Like me, many of my fellow students have left Libya. All the people I know from my village, my friends as well as fellow students at University have all always opposed Gaddafi’s dictatorship, though we’ve never been allowed to express ourselves publicly. We have been too scared to do that! Now all Libyan people have finally found the courage to speak out and they won’t stop until Gaddafi leaves the country. As soon as he does, I want to go back and start a fresh life as a communications engineer in a free Libya”.
Asman Abdul-Hamid, 19 year-old student at King’s College London. She was born in the UK though her family is originally from Iraq.
“I am here today to show my solidarity with the Libyans and all the Arab people. My parents are from Iraq but I was born and brought up here. England is definitely home to me more than Iraq. As a British citizen, I expect the Government to do more. Britain should be supporting the Arab protesters instead of selling weapons to Gaddafi, as they did just a couple of weeks ago. The media should also be more sympathetic towards what’s happening in Libya. When you watch the news on TV, instead it’s all about the British people in Libya and how to get them back safely into the UK”.
Nureddin Wahelshi. He is from Benghazi and has been living in London since 1982.
“I have been living in this country for 29 years and my kids were born here. I came to Britain as a student and then decided to settle here as I simply couldn’t live back in Libya whilst that man was in power. The Libyan people have waited a long time for the right moment to stand up as one against Gaddafi as they knew that if they acted alone as individuals before they would have paid heavily for it. But even now they are indeed suffering. The Libyans don’t want military intervention from outside, see what happened in Iraq. They are capable of getting rid of Gaddafi by themselves. What they expect from Britain, Europe and the US is a clear statement of condemnation of Gaddafi and his crimes against humanity. They have to stop making trades with him”.
Fanzia Khalifa . She comes from Tripoli and arrived in London 3 years ago to join her husband.
“Gaddafi is a criminal. He has fooled his people with false promises of change that have never been kept. I was scared of the regime because they controlled every aspect our lives. But now the new generations have been brave enough to at last stand up against him, they’ve taken to the streets and now we’ve all found the courage to say ‘no more.’ I can’t wait to go back to my country, to my home”.