“In my view what is unfolding is a generational revolt. The voice of these youths must be heard and they must be helped. Though Libya’s economic situation is not among the worst, these young people are seeking hope for the future”, said Monsignor Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli in a telephone conversation with MISNA.
Monsignor Martinelli, who is in Tripoli, said, “This morning I left our neighbourhood of Dahara to celebrate mass in Gurgi and I didn’t notice any particular unrest or protests”, added the prelate, stressing the difficulty of verifying the multitude of reports circulating in the international media.
“Many reports are inexact, such as those saying that the Cathedral and airport were bombed, which I can say is not true”, added the Bishop.
The prelate, a Franciscan, could not confirm news claiming that the air force bombed demonstrators on the streets of Tripoli yesterday, though footage was aired by many TV channels.
“The protests were repressed, but I must also say that the demonstrations were very heated”, observed Monsignor Martinelli, emphasising that “violence is not the answer and brings nothing”.
In a context of great insecurity over the nation’s future, Monsignor Martinelli urged “diplomacy to be upheld by prayer”.
“We, together with the Christian community of Tripoli, a community with an Afro-Asian majority, have prayed a lot in the past days for the Lord to bring peace to these people and for rights and ideals of justice and peace to be respected”, added the Apostolic Vicar.
He noted that in these difficult days many religious communities have been on the frontline, in the medical field, especially in the hospitals. “They have been difficult and shocking days, due to the high number of injured and dramatic scenes”.