Thousands of Libyans gathered in the capital of Tripoli on Wednesday to form a human chain, as policemen, doctors, and members of various tribes, linked hands in a symbolic display of peace and unity.
"This event is for the international day of forgiveness as we are calling for an end to violence and disagreements," said Ali Mohammed Irgebbi, one of the organisers of the event.
The eight-kilometer chain spanned from Mitiga airport to Martyr’s Square in the city center. One resident said this initiative represented the birth of a new era after 42 years of rule by Muammar Qaddafi.
"We are here to participate in the national day of peace and unity and this is a message for all Libyans all over the world that we are all united and we all stand together," Miloufa al-Badri, a resident, said.
This event occurred against a backdrop of a fragile law and order situation in the newly liberated country that is still grappling with a power vacuum. Recent clashes between armed groups has resulted in the death of several people. Libya has yet to establish a national army.
In related news, minesweepers, unaffiliated with Libya’s interim government, began clearing out left-over ammunition from a military base near the capital.
The weaponry was buried by Qaddafi loyalists in the Tajoura base to protect them from destruction by NATO attacks.
The National Transitional Council has promised to safeguard the arsenal after its international allies expressed concerns about their safety or the possibility of it falling into the wrong hands.
Ali Mohammed Irgebbi - an organiser of the event
Miloufa al-Badri - a resident