Libyan Man Discusses Gadhafi's Death

Melissa Block speaks with one Libyan in Tripoli. Abdul Samoud works as a tour guide and took part in the revolution. On Thursday, he went to Green Square with his family to celebrate the death of ousted leader Moammar Gadhafi.

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MELISSA BLOCK, host: In Tripoli, people thronged the streets on news of Gadhafi's death.

(SOUNDBITE OF GUNSHOTS)

BLOCK: People fired guns into the air in celebration. They honked horns and waved flags. Abdul Razak Samoud(ph) was in that crowd. He's worked as a tour guide in the capital. And when we spoke, he had just returned from Green Square with his wife and three children. He told us the streets were so crowded, it was nearly an impossible mission to get to the square. Mr. Samoud said they left their car and walked.

ABDUL RAZAK SAMOUD: Well, actually, we went out with the kids, and everyone was there. Every single person, woman, man, children, everyone was there. I mean, I know some people who are extreme Muslims (unintelligible) with long beards and the woman for them is a person who will look after their house. They never let the woman go out. I saw them today with their wives, with their families, with their kids celebrating there. So everyone just wanted to celebrate the death of Gadhafi.

BLOCK: What did you tell your children about why you had to be there in Green Square?

SAMOUD: Well, now, I'm afraid actually we can't hide anything for the children. No, we have a problem moving them back into their childhood. But we told them - I mean, they had - they hate Gadhafi. Anyway, my kids, they don't like him, I don't know why. Mohammad(ph) asked me if he can carry a gun. He's 8 years old, and he wanted to go and fight with the revolutionaries.

BLOCK: At 8 years old?

SAMOUD: Eight years old, yes. Oh, 8 and a half, almost 9 now. And he asked for a weapon. He said let me go with them. He was very happy. He was very, very happy today, my son.

BLOCK: Mr. Samoud, there was a lot of celebratory gunfire in the capital today. I wonder if you were worried about bringing your children to Green Square knowing...

SAMOUD: Well, at this time, when we heard the news, I left the kids, and I went out alone, myself. Then maybe half an hour or 45 minutes, they stopped firing, not completely, but now, they were carrying their guns, and they put flowers and roses in their guns, from the top of their guns.

BLOCK: They put roses on the top of their guns.

SAMOUD: Roses and flowers means we are not firing any bullets in the air.

BLOCK: You told me, Mr. Samoud, earlier that you lost your voice from being out in the streets.

SAMOUD: Yes. I've lost my voice because I was shouting. I was singing. I was celebrating. Sometimes, you don't know what you are saying.

BLOCK: Mr. Samoud, was there a part of you that wished that there had been a live capture of Moammar Gadhafi, that he was put on trial as opposed to being killed?

SAMOUD: Yes. Yes. Yes. That was my thinking because I always asked God to give us the chance to capture him alive, but happens what happened. Now, he lost his life. Maybe one of his sons, we may send him to trial to - maybe if - I mean, it's one thing humanitarian, not like Gadhafi's law of 42 years (unintelligible) because that wasn't allowed. The law for some people only. But I think now the new Libya will be fair for everyone. Libya is free. Libyans is free to state, to talk, to say whatever they want.

BLOCK: I've been talking with Abdul Razak Samoud. He's in the Libyan capital of Tripoli. Mr. Samoud, thanks so much.

SAMOUD: Thank you very much.

BLOCK: And as for the future of Libya, Mr. Samoud told us he's grown more optimistic that his country will be able to move past this bloody period.

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