One teacher at a Tripoli school recalled how the girls were all very young. Another was found three months later, cut, raped and lying in the middle of a park.
‘Early one morning, at 2am, we were taken to a closed hall,’ she said. Many of the victims say they contemplated suicide many times. The Libyan people had always known Gaddafi to be violent and unstable, but it was only after he was accused of perpetrating the Lockerbie bombing on December 21, 1988 – in which 270 American and British lives were lost when Libya blew up the Pan Am airliner on which they were travelling – that the West was prepared to take any action.Instead, she was driven at high speed to Gaddafi’s lair.Once there, he barked at his women soldiers: ‘Get her ready.’ The girl was stripped, given a blood test and shaved of all but her pubic hair.They feared the full extent of Gaddafi’s debased and lewd lifestyle would horrify the Western world and cause deep embarrassment to Libya.One of the rooms holds little more than a double bed, lit by an orange lamp.