A man whose uncle was murdered after a kidnapping in Libya has spoken of his horror at how the country is being ‘overrun by gangsters and extremists’.

Msood Abdullah Shriha says his 65 year-old uncle was kidnapped and then a ransom demanded by people claiming to support Daesh. They then sent pictures of his dead body to his family.

Msood now resides in Blackburn with his wife and child and wants the world to know that daily killings in Libya are destroying whole communities.

He said, “My uncle Saeid Soleman Shriha was a retired teacher and was kidnapped for money in July.

“How could they just kill an elderly man without any remorse whatsoever?”

Msood came to the UK in 2011 following unrest in the country. He has also seen the death of his cousin and his brother-in-law in the country in the past few years.

“The other main reason is that we are not Arabs like them and we are ethnic berbers.”

Msood said, “There has been systematic abuse of the Berbers in Libya – something that has been ignored for many years.

“We are completely shocked and upset about what has happened.”

He said the killing meant his brothers had to flee Libya to Tunisia. Their plight is being highlighted by the family here as they fear for their lives.

“We got a voice message from his uncle and saying he is being tortured. They wanted 800,000 Dinars for him to be released. Lots of families are going through the same things.

“Then they sent pictures of him killed and laying on a slab.

“That savagery took place in specific region in Libya, which, has a horrifying reputation.

“People need to know what is going on for families in Libya and how people are killing one another.”

Msood’s wife, Dr Sumia Halasa has explained she is herself at risk if she returns to Libya.

After the overthrow of Gaddafi in 2011, the country has descended into violence and chaos.

As attentions have focused on Syria, Msood says Libya is feeling the full force of groups using violence to gain a political footing.

“The situation is dire in the country and the international community is ignoring the plight of Libyans.

“Many families have gone through what we have and there is no law and order and no justice. I fear for other members of my family too.”