Iman Al-Obeidi: 'Every Day I Am Beaten' : The Two-Way The Libyan woman's dramatic appearance at a Tripoli hotel filled with journalists ended with her being dragged away by authorities. Now she isn't in prison, but says she is beaten by police when she leaves her home.
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Iman Al-Obeidi: 'Every Day I Am Beaten'

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Iman Al-Obeidi: 'Every Day I Am Beaten'

Iman Al-Obeidi: 'Every Day I Am Beaten'

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MICHELE NORRIS, Host:

Last month, Iman al-Obeidi appeared at a hotel in Tripoli where international journalists are staying. She told them that she had been gang-raped and beaten by Gadhafi troops at a checkpoint.

NORRIS: (Shouting in foreign language)

NORRIS: NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro has the latest on the story, from Tripoli.

LOURDES GARCIA: NPR was finally able to reach her by phone in Tripoli. She says she's been desperately trying to speak to the media but has been unable to reach the hotel where we're staying.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: Iman says she's been detained at least three times since she came to the hotel late last month - and repeatedly beaten, she says, by thugs in the pay of the regime.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: The security forces always let her go, and apologize. They say there's nothing they can do. Iman says it's a ploy to silence her while keeping their hands clean.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: They attack me and prevent me from going out, only to instill fear in me, she says. After making her allegations public to journalists here at the Rixos hotel late last month, she says she was taken to a doctor to verify she was raped. And then she testified in front of a prosecutor, bringing eyewitnesses to her violation to substantiate her claims. But she says so far...

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: Until now, no police have gone to examine the place I was raped in, nor have they detained the people responsible, she says. They lie to the media that they have detained people, but they haven't taken any measures. She hasn't even been asked to identify her attackers, she says - more proof that they haven't investigated her allegations. She says the lawyers who have been appointed to represent her have asked her to deny that she was raped by Gadhafi's troops.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: They said I shouldn't mention that Gadhafi's military kidnapped me, she says. Even the lawyers who are supposedly working for me want me to change my testimony. Iman says she's gone repeatedly to try and see the public prosecutor, but to no avail. He will not meet with her. She says since the rape and her subsequent notoriety, her life has become a living hell. The government spokesman has publicly called her a prostitute and a liar.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: They have distorted my image in front of Libya and the world, she says. They have slandered my reputation. She says she has a law degree, and comes from a prominent eastern Libyan family. Iman says her sister in Tripoli is also being terrorized.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: The government here was not immediately available to comment on her claims. Iman al-Obeidi finished her interview in tears.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: There is no law. This is a country with no law, she says.

NORRIS: (Speaking foreign language)

GARCIA: Lourdes Garcia-Navarro, NPR News, Tripoli.

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