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Injured rebels rejoice at dictator’s death

world Updated: Oct 23, 2011 00:31 IST

Agencies
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Life has not been easy for Mahmoud Mahmoud Ba’zeck since he was hit by a rocket during the siege of Misrata in June.

The 23-year-old former rebel fighter has had a leg amputated, three of his fingers reduced to stumps, and a metal splint fixed on to his thigh.

But, sitting in his wheelchair in a Tunisian hotel and recalling the moment he heard that Muammar Gaddafi had finally breathed his last, Ba’zeck could not help but smile. “When I heard he had been killed, I felt all right. I felt as if I didn’t have these injuries.”

All around him are the walking wounded from a war that caused devastating carnage.

Around 300 Libyans — the wounded and their relatives — are staying in the Tunis hotel.

Usually the hotel is a sombre place where men in bandages and wheelchairs smoke, talk and drink coffee.

But as the news of Gaddafi’s death spread it came alive with the sound of shouting and laughter. Confirmation of the rumours brought celebration.

“I was so happy. I was dancing here. I was injured because of him,” said Abdul Salam, 10, who suffered a ruptured spleen and injuries to his stomach and leg in a missle attack. the guardian