Once a military compound, Bab al-Aziziya has been transformed into the largest free market in the Libyan capital, Tripoli. Residents of the capital and neighboring suburbs flock to the market every Friday, enjoying the bargains found in the place where Muammar Qaddafi and his family used to live.
“(Things here) are cheaper than outside, maybe half price,” said one shopper, Muhamed Ali. “You can see the people here, see the friends, and you can talk to them. Most of them would come here on Friday. Sometimes you maybe could meet your friends who for 20 years you haven't seen.”
One merchant says the market should be given more attention by the government as it gains popularity, with sections dedicated to selling different goods such as food and clothes.
“It's quite interesting, so I am back here for the second Friday, just to walk around, to find some interesting thing I want to buy,” Ali said.
Whether residents come to sell or buy, they take pride in the fact that Bab al-Aziziya no longer belongs to a despot, but to the people of Libya.
Muhamed Ali and Shukri - shoppers