22.3.11

Sexually assaulted and told 'You'll die tonight'... but spared as she's American: Female journalist's horror at the hands of Gaddafi's men

Nightmare: Miss Addario was taken hostage on March 15 and
released on Monday night. She has spoken of her painful ordeal
London Daily Mail Online 22 March '11
A female war photographer from the New York Times revealed tonight how she was repeatedly sexually assaulted during her nightmare hostage ordeal in Libya.

Lynsey Addario was one of four Times journalists have now been released after being held captive by pro-Gaddafi forces.

During their six-day detainment, the Americans were beaten and threatened with being decapitated and shot.

Miss Addario, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer, gave a harrowing account of her brutal treatment at the hands of their Libyan captors in an interview given just hours after her release.


After she and her colleagues were hauled out of a car at a checkpoint near the eastern city of Ajdabiya, one of the Libyans punched her in the face and laughed at her.

‘Then I started crying and he was laughing more,’ she told the Times.One man grabbed her breasts – the start of a pattern of sexual harassment she endured over the ensuing 48 hours.

‘There was a lot of groping,’ she said. ‘Every man who came in contact with us basically felt every inch of my body short of what was under my clothes.’

As she was being driven away from Ajdabiya, she said another of her captors stroked her head and told her repeatedly that she was going to be killed.

‘He was caressing my head in this sick way, this tender way, saying, "You’re going to die tonight. You’re going to die tonight",‘ she added.  . . .

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Assault: Lara Logan was sexually abused while
reporting on the celebrations in Cairo following
last month's popular uprising

Thirteen journalists are still said to be either missing in Libya or in government custody.

They include four from the Al Jazeera Arab TV network, two from Agence France-Presse news agency and a photographer from Getty Images. Six Libyan journalists are also unaccounted for.

 Last month, South African journalist Lara Logan, Chief Foreign Correspondent for CBS, was also sexually abused while covering scenes of celebration in Cairo's Tahrir Square.

Miss Logan was surrounded and suffered a brutal and sustained sexual assault before being saved by a group of women and Egyptian soldiers.

The mother-of-two needed hospital treatment on her return to the US.

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