Libyan rape victim Eman al Obeidy flies off to US for refuge

Written by: Biswajeet Panda
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Eman al Obeidy
Tripoli, Jun 6: Eman al Obeidy, the Libyan woman who burst into international limelight after alleging that she was gang-raped by Muammar Gaddafi's soldiers is reportedly on her way to the US. Last week, she was forcibly deported back to Libya by officials in Qatar where she had fled after her alleged gang-rape.

Al Jazaeera, reported her sister Marwa al Obeidy as saying that Eman has flown in to the US from the Libyan rebels stronghold town of Benghazi. According to her, she embarked on her US journey on Jun 5.

However, there has been no confirmation about her destination in the US.

Marwa al Obeidy was quoted by the Associated Press as saying, "We just want a chance for her to be treated psychologically and to rest. My sister has just been through so much. Iman locked herself in her room in Doha and refused to leave the house. She would get nightmares and fall off the bed."

Elaborating on the plans to send Eman to the US, Marwa said, "Eman wanted to travel directly to America from Qatar, but for some logistical reasons Qatar wouldn't allow it. That's when they didn't treat us very nicely."

Saying that she expects the US to help her overcome the turbulent times her sister has recently fallen into, Marwa was quoted as saying, "I am sure they will greet her with such warmth and kindness. We are happy for her."

Eman al Al Obeidy caught the world's attention on March 26 when she barged into the Rixos Hotel in Tripoli, Libya while international journalists staying there were having their breakfast. She told to the reporters that she had been taken from a checkpoint east of the Libyan capital and was held forcibly for two days while being continuously beaten and raped by 15 men of Gaddafi's security forces.

She later fled Libya to Tunisia with the help of two rebel Gaddafi army officers and their families. French diplomats drove her from the border and handed her off to members of the Transitional National Council, who arranged for her flight to Qatar with her family members. She was in the gulf Arab state, awaiting resettlement as a refugee before she was deported by the country's authorities.

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