UPDATE 1-Tripoli woman was in anti-Gaddafi protest --cousin

Sun Mar 27, 2011 10:46pm GMT

* Woman was a lawyer from Tobruk in eastern Libya

* Eman al-Obaidi showed journalists scars, bruises at hotel

* Three other women, also lawyers, missing with her (Adds Libya govt comment in paras 10-13)

BENGHAZI, Libya, March 27 (Reuters) - A Libyan woman who burst into a Tripoli hotel to show journalists injuries she blamed on Muammar Gaddafi's militia was first targeted by the authorities after a protest, her cousin said on Sunday.

Eman al-Obaidi entered a hotel where foreign journalists were staying on Saturday to show bruises and scars she said were caused by militiamen. She was hurried out of the hotel by security men and hotel staff and bundled into a car.

Government officials in the capital first said Obaidi was either drunk or mentally ill. Later, another official suggested she was a prostitute.

On Sunday, the government appeared to backtrack on its earlier remarks, saying she had been released.

"It's a criminal case against four individuals. She is with her family. It's an honour related case," said government spokesman Mussa Ibrahim.

Wadad Omar, who said she was her cousin, said Obaidi was originally from east Libya and was first arrested after taking part in a protest in the early days of the uprising in the western city of Zawiyah.   Continued...

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