BBC News reports that al-Kwafiya prison in Benghazi, Libya, went from riot to jailbreak today. It is estimated that close to 1200 prison inmates were able to escape.
In a move that mimics the sentiment of many Egyptians towards the Muslim Brotherhood, Libyans may be next to oust the Muslim Brotherhood from power within their government. Some of the inmates that escaped al-Kwafiya prison were once supporters of Col Muammar Gaddafi, and there are reports of escaped inmates raiding and attacking security facilities.
Under the leadership of Col Muammar Gaddafi, Libya was less susceptible to the Muslim Brotherhood influences, but after the Spring Revolution, their influence became stronger and grew in power. Libyans now live in fear, in what many describe as a police state.
Aljazeera reports that The Muslim Brotherhood’s political wing: Justice and Construction Party (JCP) has grown to become the second largest political party in Libya’s legislature. The protests against the Muslim Brotherhood have turned from peaceful to violent as:
“Hundreds took to the streets overnight to Saturday to denounce the killing of a prominent political activist and critic of the Brotherhood, Abdelsalam al-Mosmary, who was shot dead after leaving a mosque following Friday prayers. Mosmary was an outspoken opponent of the Brotherhood, whose political wing is the second biggest party in the national congress, and regularly appeared on television criticizing the presence of armed militias on Libya’s streets”
These are some of this week’s incidences of violence reported in the region:
** The al-Kwafiya prison break.
** Protesters smashed windows, destroyed documents, and set fire to the Muslim Brotherhood offices, and the offices of the religious-leaning Justice and Construction Party (JCP) .
**A bomb blew up in the Military Intelligence Building.
** The headquarters of the Liberal National Forces Alliance (NFA), the biggest party in the legislature, was sacked by looters.
** Seven Iranian relief workers were kidnapped in Benghazi.
** A hand grenade was thrown at the Appeals Court.
**Security forces diffused two time-bombs planted near the Office of National Security in Benghazi.
Libya still has many citizens who do not feel safe under the new leadership, and many have started operating separately. Unlike Egypt, with an established tradition of democracy, free press, and whose citizens are more in touch with modern media, Libyans have less avenues to turn to in order to form a more united front against the Muslim Brotherhood.