Two Libyan veterans ‘beaten’ in Istanbul
ISTANBUL - Doğan News Agency
Police officers escort a Libyan who claimed that he was beaten by three individuals while walking on Beyoğlu’s iconic İstiklal Avenue on Nov 20. AA photo
Two Libyan rebels in Turkey for medical treatment reportedly took staff and visitors hostage at an Istanbul hospital on Nov. 20 on the grounds that they were mistreated after sustaining injuries in an attack on İstiklal Avenue.
The men had been allowed to take a walk on the night of Nov. 20 by their doctors at Istanbul’s German Hospital, where they were both receiving treatment for their war wounds. While walking on Beyoğlu’s iconic İstiklal Avenue, they were allegedly beaten severely by three individuals.
The rebel troops, Abu Aishe Muhammed and Abdul Manan Abu Gul, were brought to Turkey by a military plane provided by the Turkish General Staff
after they were wounded during the recent uprising in Libya against Col. Moammar Gadhafi.
Muhammed’s nose was reportedly broken in the Nov. 20 attack, and both soldiers were both unconscious when they arrived at the Taksim Training and Research Hospital by ambulance.
After regaining consciousness, the men allegedly took the nurses, doctors and visitors hostage for some time, according to eyewitnesses.
One of the rebels grabbed a needle from a nurse and began randomly attacking those around him before hospital security personnel intervened and brought the matter under control.
The two Libyans said their cell phones and 5,000 euros had been stolen at the hospital and added that they were going to file a complaint about the workers whom they accused of treating them harshly.
Both men were injured in the fighting in Libya, according to an unidentified Libyan man who had helped organize the transport of wounded soldiers from the North African country to Turkey.
Muhammed and Abu Gul might have had some alcohol in their system but they should not have been treated in this way, he said. “We are guests here.”
“Let Prime Minister [Recep] Tayyip Erdoğan see this. Libya and Turkey were supposed to be brothers,” Muhammed said during press interviews.
The veterans, Muhammed and Abu Gul were then sent to the Forensics Institute to take an alcohol test before being transferred to the Okmeydanı Training and Research Hospital where they will continue to receive treatment.