Libya: Random Facts and Trivia

Some random facts and trivia for the country of the world Libya, production of oil, Islamic law, Qaddafi's record.

LIBYA

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An officer of the Revolutionary Command Council has complained, "Our peasants need water, but every time we dig for water, we find oil." With production at about 3 million barrels daily, oil provides an annual income of over $4 billion. Because of its low sulphur content, as well as the country's nearness to Europe, Libyan oil has been especially prized.

The Islamic Shari'a law is the law of this Muslim land. A thief can suffer loss of his hand, although the amputation is now done by a doctor in a hospital and under anesthesia. Alcohol is banned. There is, however, a black market for liquor run by diplomats and visiting Arabs. Colonel Qaddafi has stated that alcohol should be banned throughout the "entire world on order of the UN." There are dress regulations. Police have been known to splash red paint on the legs of women wearing skirts deemed too short. Long-haired males have been given haircuts. Use of makeup and jewelry is restricted. There is a shortage of women's hairdressers as, according to Islamic law, it is "forbidden for a man to touch a woman's hair."

The Qaddafi record includes:

--Backing of an attempt on the life of King Hassan of Morocco.

--Responsibility for the success of a countercoup by Sudan's General Nimeiry in 1971, by forcing down the BOAC jetliner carrying leftist coup leaders and turning them over to Nimeiry to be executed.

--Financial backing of Palestinian al-Fatah guerrillas, totaling $50 million annually. He also gave a special bonus of $5 million to the Black September terror group following the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre of Israeli athletes.

--Promising financial support to those black African nations that would break ties with Israel, and threatening those that would not. All but 4 agreed to do so.

--Providing arms and money to the Irish Republican Army, apparently as a vendetta against Britain for its role in the creation of Israel.

--Providing loans to American Black Muslims.

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