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Geopolitics

The Bitter Tale Of A Teenaged Son Sent Off To Fight For Gaddafi

Salim, 16, is the son of Gaddafi loyalists from Sabratha, north of Tripoli. He now lies in a hospital prison bed in Misrata, lucky to be alive, but scared to contact his parents -- and knowing his life will never be the same.

Libyan voter (by septimius severus)
The ultimate price of war (©DavideMonteleone/Contrasto)
Lemine Ould Salem

MISRATA – Salim bites his lip, then closes his eyes. Even so, we can guess that he's trying his best to hold back tears. But when he pulls himself together, it's just to whisper a few words that capture all the pain he's trying to resist. "Gaddafi has left, but what about me? What will I do like this?, " asks Salim, staring at his leg, or at least, what's left of it.

Salim, 16, is a high school student from Sabratha, about 45 miles north of Tripoli. He fought among Gaddafi's military units. Today he is in jail, in Misrata, one of the bastions of the anti-Gaddafi resistance that fell into rebel hands last May, after several long months of fighting. Salim, along with other injured, is jailed in a block that has been turned into a hospital by those who now command the city.

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Two Ukrainian soldiers at a military base on the outskirts of the separatist region of Donetsk

Lisa Berdet, Lila Paulou, Anne-Sophie Goninet and Bertrand Hauger

👋 Halito!*

Welcome to Wednesday, where the first war crimes trial against a Russian soldier since Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine gets underway in Kyiv, Kim Jong-un slams North Korean officials’ response to the coronavirus outbreak and Mexico’s National Registry of Missing People reaches a grim milestone. Meanwhile, Ukrainian news outlet Livy Bereg looks at the rise of ethnic separatism across Russia’s federal regions.

[*Choctaw, Native American]

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