Save the Libyan Dissident Dr. Idrees Boufayed


To Whom It May Concern:
Dr. Idrees 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 Gheryan hospitals.
• 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 living.
• 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



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