The video shows a group of men, their wrists tied up, locked in a zoo cage. In their mouths are pieces of green cloth, which angry men standing around the cage order them to swallow. These shocking images were filmed at a zoo in the northern Libyan city of Misrata. They illustrate the lawlessness of militiamen who fought against former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, and who now control large parts of the country.
This undated video (below) was uploaded to YouTube in late February, and recently started gaining attention online. The men standing around the cage seem to be enjoying the spectacle. They insult the prisoners non-stop. One of the men yells, “Come over here, you dirty dog! Swallow the flag!” The flag seems to be the green flag that represented Libya under Gaddafi. At 57 seconds and again at 1 minute into the video, gunshots – presumably shot into the air – can be heard.
While the men in the cage are all black, it is unclear whether their race had anything to do with their imprisonment, or if they were just on the wrong side during the Libyan revolution.
These prisoners are not immigrants from sub-Saharan Africa
; they are black Libyans from the town of Tawergha, 38 kilometres away from Misrata. Gaddafi’s troops set up camp in Tawergha during the revolution.