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Rush to bury bodies in Tripoli


Libya

Rush to bury bodies in Tripoli

There are few accurate casualty estimates available so far for the Battle for Tripoli, but the hospitals are overflowing. Many of the last week’s dead have been piled near medical centres. Space is running out. And the hospitals want to treat the living.

Death’s ceremony lies on the floor, as the hundreds make way for the thousands of bodies to be disposed of.

Because outside, funeral seems a poor word for what awaits the fallen. Freezer lorries line up to transport the dead.

“We are already talking to medical workers about it because the dead need to be treated with dignity. First and foremost they need to be indentified and their families informed, but of course in some places the dead have been buried already; their pictures have been taken,” says the International Committee of the Red Cross’s Robin Waudo.

A prayer of farewell goes up for the lorry, and it drives away.

The bodies are then removed from the truck. With a mechanical digger.

The race is on to get these people under the ground, before they become a health risk.

The mass grave is just one of many being opened in the Tripoli soil in this Libyan summer.

Robert Hackwill

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