Libyan Living In Oklahoma Worried About Friends, Family

Monday, March 21st 2011, 12:55 am
By: News 9

Jon Jordan, News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Military officials said there's no evidence of civilian casualties despite Libya's claims of dozens of deaths, but one Oklahoman said he is worried about his friends and family who are still in Libya.

As a young boy growing up in Libya, Mohamed Elyazgi knew it wasn't a place where he wanted to live and raise a family.

"I actually fled Libya because I thought it's not going to be safe for me over there anymore," Elyazgi said.

Elyazgi said the atrocities that are unfolding in his native country on a daily basis are things he witnessed growing up, including the brutal killing of one of his college friends.

"My friend got hanged in the middle of the university, so I decided I cannot stay here anymore. It's endangering myself and even my family. They helped me to come to the United States and finish my education and got married here and have kids," Elyazgi said.

Elyazgi said he supports the U.S. led air strikes in hopes that it will finally remove Moammar Gadhafi from power.

"Every Libyan has suffered because of him," Elyazgi said. "It seems like we are always being a little bit too late. He's already killed, they talk about, 6,000 to 10,000 people already killed. Why we wait that long?"

Elyazgi said he can't help but think about the future of Libya, one without Gadhafi in power.

"Once he's gone and the wealth of Libya will be used by the Libyan people to develop their country, then the future for Libya, then the future is unlimited there," Elyazgi said.

Elyazgi said several of his family members, including his mother and father, were killed when the U.S. bombed the country in 1986 following a Libyan terrorist attack on U.S. soldiers in Germany.