Libyan resistance movement

Libyan resistance movement (1911-1943)
LocationItalian Libya, Egypt, Sudan
  • Suppression of the rebellion by the Italians
  • Omar Mukhtar executed
  • Allied occupation of Libya and eventually Libyan independence in 1951

 Kingdom of Italy

 British Empire (from 1942)
 France (from 1942)
Commanders and leaders
Rodolfo Graziani Emir Idris of Cyrenaica
Omar Mukhtar 
~856,000 soldiers Thousands
Casualties and losses

40,000[1]-70,000 dead[2] (battles, deportation, starvation etc.).

250,000-300,000 total loss (migration of indigenous) [3]
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History of Libya
Libyco-Berber era pre-146 BC
Roman era to 640 AD
Islamic rule 6401510
Spanish rule 15101530
Order of Saint John 15301551
Ottoman rule 15511911
Italian occupation 19111934
Italian Libya 19341943
Allied occupation 19431951
Kingdom of Libya 19511969
Libyan Arab Republic 19691977
Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya 19771986
Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya 19862011
First Civil War 2011
National Transitional Council 20112012
General National Congress 20122014
House of Representatives 2014present
Second Civil War 2014present
Government of National Accord 2016present
Libya portal

The Libyan resistance movement was the name given to rebel forces opposing the Italian Empire during its "Pacification of Libya" between 1923 and 1932.


Second Italo-Libyan War (1923–1932)

The Libyan resistance was initially led by Omar Mukhtar (Arabic عمر المختار ‘Umar Al-Mukhtār) (1862 – 16 September 1931), who was from the tribe of Mnifa, born in a small village called Janzour located in the eastern part of Barqa.

Later King Idris and his Senussi tribe in the provinces of Cyrenaica and Tripolitania started to become opposed to the Italian colonization after 1929, when Italy changed its political promises of moderate "protectorate" to the Senussi (done in 1911) and – because of Benito Mussolini – started to take complete colonial control of Libya.

Resistance was totally crushed by General Rodolfo Graziani in the 1930s and the country was again controlled by the Italians with the help of Arab fascists, to the point that many Libyan colonial troops fought on the side of Italy between 1940 and 1943: two divisions of Libyan colonial troops were created in the late 1930s and 30,000 native Libyans fought for Italy during World War II.

See also


  1. Mohamed Fekini and the Fight to Free Libya - Angelo Del Boca,Antony Shugaar
  2. A Historical Companion to Postcolonial Literatures - Prem Poddar,Rajeev Shridhar Patke,Lars Jensen
  3. John L. Wright, Libya, a Modern History, Johns Hopkins University Press, p. 42.
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