Serguiwa filmed what were among the first images to emerge of the regime’s crackdown on anti-government protests in Benghazi, also known as the cradle of the Libyan revolution. In it, Serguiwa’s voice can be heard screaming the now famous words, ‘They want to burn us!’
Video of unrest in Benghazi filmed by our Observer, Samar Sarqiwa, on February 18, 2011.
On the day of the country’s historic parliamentary elections [Saturday, July 7], Serguiwa returned to the very spot where she stood and filmed the scenes of violence nearly 17 months ago. She also published an open letter entitled “Letter to Libya” on her Facebook page. Below is an excerpt from the text:
‘Hello Dear Libya,
After a long wait, a very anxious wait marked by sacrifice, at last your day has come my beloved Libya. We are going to pay homage to our martyrs and the victims of our battle for freedom by going out to vote and dipping our fingers in the ink of progress […] It is the moment for every Libyan who loves their country, for every Libyan who cares about our general wellbeing to head out to the polls so that we might carry our country toward a more peaceful future. Thank you, my country that has suffered so, for this gift’.
As if to turn the page on Libya’s past, Serguiwa leaned on the very balcony where she filmed the video more than one year ago, and photographed herself holding up an ink-stained finger.