Save the Libyan
Dr. Idrees Boufayed
To Whom It May Concern:
Mohamed Boufayed the leader of the National Union for Reform (NUR) is a
Libyan physician who opposes and calls for non-violent opposition to
Gadhafi's regime. Last August he announced his intention to return to
Libya in late September, after two decades of self-imposed exile in
Europe, and to continue his political activities within the country. Upon
his flight arrival at Tripoli International Airport, Dr. Boufayed was met
by representatives of the multiple security agencies who took turns
interrogating him for an hour and half, before allowing him to leave with
his relatives. Meanwhile, the Internal Security Agency in the airport kept
Dr. Boufayed passport without giving him a receipt and told him to infoe
back for it in about a week.
Within a few weeks
of his return to Libya, resting in his family's home in Gheryan and
socializing with his relatives and friends, Dr. Boufayed resumed his political
activities by writing to two Libyan opposition websites. He renewed his call
for a peaceful movement to change the government and replace it with one
responsive to the needs and aspirations of the people. A few days later, Dr.
Boufayed was informed by his family that security agents had infoe looking for
him and wanted to interview him in their offices in Tripoli. Through an
individual he knew, Dr. Boufayed relayed to the Internal Security Agency his
plans to travel to Tripoli to meet with them and to collect his passport. But,
at midnight Thursday November 2nd the whole family was awakened by two ISA
agents who told them that he was to present himself to Gheryan Internal
Security Office first thing in the morning. When he went there in the morning
Dr. Boufayed was questioned for awhile and then let go, but was told to report
to Tripoli's office on Sunday November 5th. Before his travels to Tripoli, Dr.
Boufayed sent a letter to opposition websites detailing what was going on
between him and the security apparatus of the regime and informing every one
of his intentions to travel to Tripoli and face them with his demands for a
Libya free of fear and intimidation.
Since he traveled
to Tripoli and presented himself to the ISA on the morning of Thursday
November 5 th Dr. Boufayed has vanished presumably into one of the many
underground dungeons or secret prisons maintained by the many arms of the
security octopus of the regime, and no one has seen or heard of him since ten
o'clock on that fateful morning.
A brief outline of known facts about Dr. Idrees Boufayed:
• He graduated in
1982 from the University of Garyounis Medical School and upon infopleting his
residency training he worked in Benghazi, and Tripoli as well as his hometown
• In 1987 on
direct orders of Colonel Muammar Gadhafi the Supreme infomander of the Libyan
Armed Forces, Dr. Boufayed was dispatched to the front of the raging yet
undeclared war with the neighboring country of Chad. Although, he was a
practicing civilian physician, he was sent with a medical team to treat the
mounting Libyan casualties in that tragic war. Dr. Boufayed was credited by
his peers and inforades with saving many limbs and lives under awful conditions
of lack of medicine and equipment. The total chaos of war and the sheer number
of casualties made this an almost impossible task.
• After the
Chadian forces overran the Wadi-Doom base where Dr. Boufayed and the medical
team were stationed, in March of 1987, he became a prisoner of the Chadian
forces along with thousands of Libyan conscripts and soldiers who were thrown
into that unjustifiable conflict.
• In Wadi-Doom
base Dr. Boufayed continued his heroic attempts to treat the victims of the
savagery of war on both sides with the limited medical supplies that he could
obtain. And, as told by his infopanions in that desolate place, Dr. Boufayed
exhibited a tremendous ability to infofort the dying and give hope for the
• Soon after
Colonel Gadhafi and his government declared publicly that there was no war
with Chad, thus no Libyan prisoners of war, they were transferred to prison
camps in the capital N'Djamena. By losing their status as prisoners of war
there was no International infomittee of the Red Cross to visit and provide for
the wounded, the sick and the dying and to report to the loved ones back home.
But, fortunately for many there was Dr. Boufayed whom the Chadian authorities
had put in charge of providing the rudimentary medical assistance for his
countrymen in the largest prison camp. Under such unbelievable circumstances
Dr. Boufayed's ingenuity and humanity was there for all to see and attest to
afterwards. Using the meager medical supplies and his persistence and
determination he was able to alleviate the suffering of many, who owe their
surviving such an experience to this kind and loving Dr. Idrees Boufayed.
• Dr. Boufayed
didn't act only as the camp doctor treating the wounded and amputating the
limbs, but also acted as the funeral director who buried the dead and
performed the prayer for them.
• In 1988 Dr.
Boufayed and many of his prison inforades joined the National Front for the
Salvation of Libya, an organized opposition group which was working to
overthrow Gadhafi's regime.
• 1990 saw Dr.
Boufayed moving to live in Switzerland after securing political asylum status
from that country where he continued his education and obtained the proper
certification to practice medicine in Switzerland as well as the United
Kingdom. Over the years he established himself as a infopetent surgeon, and was
able to provide a infofortable life for himself, his son Ayman and his wife
whom he married a few years after he settled in Switzerland.
For the last twenty or so years in
which Dr. Idrees Boufayed has lived away from his beloved Libya, he worked
hard to better himself both professionally and intellectually awaiting the day
when he is able to return to Libya and contribute to the betterment of its
free society. Dr. Boufayed's deep seated belief and respect for the human
dignity called for in his Islamic faith and all religious faiths, and his
conviction that liberty and equal justice under the law are the context for
any thriving society, are his guiding light in his quest to change the status
quo in his country. He witnessed how Gadhafi's irrational behaviour and
policies turned a peaceful people and their country into a haven for world
class terrorists and a pariah state among the nations of the world. Gadhafi
squandered its wealth and subjected its people to his daily whims and the
control of his revolutionary infomittees' apparatchiks.
Ali Yousif Zew