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General News of Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Source: citifmonline

70 Ghanaian 'mercenaries' detained by Libya's NTC

The government of Ghana says it is working tirelessly to seek the release of about 70 detained Ghanaian nationals, suspected to be mercenaries, backing the pro-Gaddafi rebels. The suspects are currently being held in detention in the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

They are among a group of West and North Africans being picked up on the orders of the rebel-led National Transitional Council.

The NTC have taken charge of a significant part of the country following the disappearance of former dictator, Muammar Gaddafi.

The rebels have been rounding up persons it accuses of being mercenaries, working for the fugitive leader.

One of the detained Ghanaians, Hassan Abdallah who spoke to Joy FM through a smuggled mobile phone, said that presently no charges have been brought against them, since last week Monday when they were detained.

“They have collected our passports, our luggage, everything, they have not told us anything. There are even people here from the Ghanaian embassy but they refuse to let them enter. The condition we live in is very bad, the whole day we are giving just water and a little bread for food”.

The Foreign Affairs Minister, Alhaji Mohammed Mumuni has corroborated the information but however clarified that the Ghanaians were being held in detention because of immigration irregularities and offences and not as mercenaries. He assured that Ghana’s missions were working tirelessly to have the prisoners released.

“When we first heard the information we spoke to our Chargee D’affaire, Emmanuel Anoff in Libya, who confirmed to us that their preliminary investigations had shown that Ghanaians were among some groups of persons who had been detained because of some immigration violations.

“As at now, we are uncertain about the exact number of Ghanaian citizens who have held up but we are working towards having them released. ”