Document - Libya: Dr 'Omran 'Omar al-Turbi

EXTERNAL


AI Index: MDE 19/12/97

Distrib: PG/SC



To:Health professionals

From:Medical Office / Middle East sub-regional team

Date: 25 June 1997


MEDICAL LETTER WRITING ACTION

Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi

LIBYA


Keywords


Theme: prolonged detention without trial

Profession/association: dentist


Summary


Amnesty International continues to be concerned at the prolonged detention without trial of Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi, a dentist who trained in the USA and holds Masters degrees in dentistry and public health. He has been imprisoned since his arrest in 1984. He has never been charged or tried with any offense though it is believed he was arrested in connection with membership of an illegal organization. AI is urging the Libyan authorities to release Dr al-Turbi unless it can guarantee him a fair trial on charges which should be made public.


Recommended action


Letters are requested from medical professionals to the addresses given below


• saying that you are writing about Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi who you believe is imprisoned in Abu Salim Prison in Tripoli


• expressing concern that Dr al-Turbi has now been held for more than 13 years without charge or trial


• seeking information on his current state of health


• urging that, unless he is to be charged and tried with a recognisable offence, he be released


Addresses:


Colonel Mu’ammar al-Gaddafi

Leader of the Revolution

Office of the Leader of the Revolution

Tripoli

Great Socialist People’s

Libyan Arab Jamahiriya






His Excellency

‘Umar Mustafa al-Muntasir

Secretary of the People’s Committee

of the People’s Bureau for Foreign

Liaison and International Cooperation

Secretariat of the People’s Committee

of the People’s Bureau for Foreign

Liaison and International Cooperation

Tripoli, Great Socialist People’s

Libyan Arab Jamahiriya


His Excellency

Muhammad Mahmoud al-Hijazi

Secretary of the People’s Committee

for General Security

Secretariat of the People’s Committee

for General Security

Tripoli

Great Socialist People’s

Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

His Excellency

Muhammad Bilqasim al-Zawi

Secretary of the People’s Committee

for Justice

Secretariat of the People’s Committee

for Justice

Tripoli

Great Socialist People’s

Libyan Arab Jamahiriya


Copies


Please send copies of your letters to the nearest diplomatic representative of Libya.


Other action


You could send a copy of the action to your dental association asking them to appeal to the Libyan leader about Dr al-Turbi’s case. You should urge the association to write in polite and measured tones.

EXTERNAL


AI Index : MDE 19/12/97

Distr : PG/SG

Date: 25 June 1997



Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi

LIBYA




Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi, born in Derna, Libya, in 1950, was arrested on 28 May 1984 and is believed to have been held since without charge or trial in Abu Salim Prison in Tripoli. Some three weeks prior to his arrest there had been clashes between security forces and the opposition group al-Jabha al-Watanya Li-Inqad Libya (National Front for the Salvation of Libya). Hundreds of suspected members were arrested at the time and some were executed. It is believed that the arrest of Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi was linked to his alleged membership of the National Front. AI believes that he was not involved in the incident which precipitated the mass arrests but has continued to seek clarification of the reasons for his detention.


Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi is married with a son and a daughter. He studied at the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania in the US from 1981 to 1983 where he obtained Masters degrees in dentistry and public health. Prior to his arrest he worked as director of Benghazi Central Dental Clinic in Libya.


Background


Dr ‘Omran ‘Omar al-Turbi was one of a number of health professionals on whose behalf AI appealed in 1992 (see Imprisonment without fair trial: Medical students and health professionals in prison - Libya, AI Index: MDE 19/02/92, 27 October 1992). Since that time there has been little if any improvement in the situation of prisoners. In July 1996, there was a one week mutiny by prisoners and detainees in Abu Salim Prison. The mutiny was said to have been caused by the appalling conditions in the prison, including lack of medical care, inadequate hygiene, overcrowding and poor diet. Scores of men died during the incident which ended when security forces stormed the prison.


AI remains concerned by the cases of hundreds of political prisoners, including possible prisoners of conscience who continue to be held without charge or trial. AI is urging the Libyan authorities to release all prisoners of conscience and to provide for the fair trial or release of all other political prisoners. All those in custody should be held in conditions which meet international minimum standards and their security should be guaranteed.

How you can help

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