In memory of Salwa Bugaighis, Libyan human rights activist murdered by Islamist scum

Salwa Bugaighis
Nureddin, Editor, Redress Information & Analysis, writes:

Salwa Bugaighis was an outspoken human rights lawyer who became a leader in Libya’s uprising and its most prominent female face.

However, as the Independent put it, her ceaseless campaign for women’s rights “led to her being condemned by jihadist groups, as well as by the Muslim Brotherhood and the Grand Mufti, Al-Sadiq al-Ghiriani”.

Salwa repeatedly stressed that she was a follower of Islam, but spoke out against the hijab, arguing there was nothing in the faith demanding that women should cover themselves entirely, and rarely even wore a headscarf herself.

Her public challenge to the Islamists on this and other issues drove them to fury, and she received a number of death threats. But she refused to be silenced and was determined, she said, to see that the hard-won freedoms of the revolution were not clawed back.

By spring of 2014 Salwa had left Benghazi because she knew she would be targeted for her political views, but she risked a trip back home to cast her vote on election day – an election vehemently opposed by the Islamists.

That night, on 25 June 2014, a group of five masked men, carrying Kalashnikovs and knives, burst into her house in the eastern city of Benghazi. After shooting a guard at the gate, they shot and stabbed Salwa and kidnapped her husband.

“It was a shock for the whole society, for Benghazi, for Libya,” Iman Bugaighis, Salwa’s sister, says in this film. “It was like an earthquake.”

This short film, by Cameron Hickey and Zainab Salbi, is a tribute to Salwa Bugaighis, a brave woman who stood up for principles which the vast majority of Libyans aspire to and paid the ultimate price, murdered by the scum of the earth.

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