Biker groups thrive in post gaddafi libya

The Sunday Guardian - - The Week -

TRIPOLI: Don­ning leather and hel­mets, they roar along Libya’s hair-rais­ing, pot­holed roads on care­fully pol­ished Har­ley David­sons and Kawasakis. Part of a grow­ing scene, there are now hun­dreds of bik­ers in Tripoli alone who come from all walks of life. One is the imam of a lo­cal mosque, an­other a 60-year-old me­chanic who lived nearly three decades in Texas. Rid­ing past - of­ten in groups - on their gleam­ing ma­chines, they stick out in Libya, where a con­ser­va­tive so­ci­ety still bears the scars of decades of au­thor­i­tar­ian rule under for­mer Libyan leader Muam­mar Gaddafi, and the rev­o­lu­tion and con­flict that fol­lowed. They say their hobby lifts moods in a coun­try worn down by years of vi­o­lence and po­lit­i­cal up­heaval since Gaddafi’s ouster in 2011. Most bik­ers do reg­u­lar pro­fes­sional jobs. Some have im­ported pow­er­ful modern rac­ing bikes, oth­ers have re­built or adapted older, clas­sic mod­els. Biker groups have also sprung up in other ma­jor Libyan cities in­clud­ing Beng­hazi and Za­wiya.

Tripoli bik­ers group.

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