Quotes: MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Coffee and pizza a slice of life in troubled Libya  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - AFP - 24/08/2014
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!



(MENAFN - AFP) In corners of Tripoli unaffected by militia violence gripping the capital, Libyans sip espresso and eat pizza - defiantly, as the sound of gunfire echoes in the distance.

Since the fall of dictator Moamer Kadhafi in 2011, pizzerias and cafes have proliferated in the ex-Italian colony, which sits just across the Mediterranean Sea from its former ruler.

"I can't start the day without a coffee," declares Salem, clutching a Macchiato-like beverage as he sat with friends on the terrace of "Cafe Omar al-Mokhtar", named after Libya's anti-colonial hero.

But the retiree just pulled a face when asked about the worsening security situation in his country, where interim authorities have failed to establish order amid deadly fighting between rival militias.

Three years after Kadhafi's removal from power - and subsequent grisly death - Libya has slipped into anarchy, torn apart by clashes pitting nationalist fighters against Islamist-linked militants.

Thousands have been displaced nationwide, and the violence has made parts of the capital Tripoli no-go areas - the airport among them, where intense clashes have been taking place in recent days.

But in the peaceful areas of the city, the coffee trade is booming as young Libyans open new cafes and foreign businesses arrive, trying to capitalise on the post-Kadhafi era.

- 'Best coffee in town' -

At a coffee shop on a main thoroughfare, a sign proclaims "The best coffee in town". The cafe is open 24 hours a day so Libyans can enjoy their fix around the clock.

Until the Italians arrived, the inhabitants of Libya were known as tea drinkers. Now coffee is an integral part of their everyday lives.

Kadhafi, whose reign began in 1969, did not welcome investment from aboad, but since his fall a large Italian coffee company has opened three cafes in Tripoli.

"It's exceptional," said the director Rashid, a Moroccan who quit working for a coffee company in Dubai before deciding to try his luck in Libya.

"Our customers come back every day," he enthused at the cafe, where every table was full and women were present - a rare sight in the country's male-dominated society.

Mohammed - a thirty-something - owns the "Adreyan Cafe", a small place on the waterfront which he says offers high-end coffee.

"I choose coffee with the utmost care," he said proudly, pointing to the golden bags of a famous Italian brand.

- Pizza, Libyan-style -

Residents of Tripoli, it seems, also can't get enough of one of Italy's famous other exports - pizza. But rather than seeking the pure Italian taste, many pizzerias adapt their recipes to suit local preferences, often avoiding particularly strong sauces.

At "Il Forno" and a handful of other pizzerias, however, they try to stick as close as possible to traditional Neapolitan wood-fired pizza, although procuring good cheese can be a problem.

"My kids want it every day," said one Libyan, surrounded by his three children, all tucking into pizza at the restaurant in the city centre.

Ahmed, a pizza chef, said young people made up the majority of the clientele. Customers chatted and ate, seeming a million miles away from the gunfire tearing apart the south of Tripoli, where the airport is located.

Libyans' love of espresso, pizza and pasta, which they are also big consumers of, underline their ties with Italy.

But so does something else. Despite the dire security situation, Rome is one of the few Western countries still to have a diplomatic presence in Tripoli.


 


AFP




  MENA News Headlines
 Jul 30 2016 - Villa for sale in Egypt or Apartment for sale in CairoMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Press) google_ad_client = "pub-7060895361757846"; /* MPR 200x200, created 7/14/10 */ google_ad_slot = "9848691929"; google_ad_width = 200; google_ad_height = 200; Cairo Egypt ...

 Jul 30 2016 - Respected Dermatologist, Ellen Burov, MD, FAAD, will Have her Outstanding Achievements Featured in The Leading Physicians of the WorldMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Press) Respected Dermatologist, Ellen Burov, MD, FAAD, will Have her Outstanding Achievements Featured in The Leading Physicians of the World Posted by admin on July 30, 2016 New York ...

 Jul 30 2016 - Jordan's public debt drops to USD35.35bnMENAFN
(MENAFN) Jordan's public debt amounted up to USD35.35bn in May this year, comprising 92.6 percent of its GDP estimated by the Finance Ministry at USD38.19bn.On the other hand, the debt of the ...

 Jul 30 2016 - Saudi's Vision 2030 to enhance digital economyMENAFN
(MENAFN) Saudi Arabia embarked on National Transformation Program 2020 and Vision 2030, to foster a digital culture and shifting more to digital economy.With a digital economy, more jobs can be made ...

 Jul 30 2016 - Dubai's Nakheel profit grows by USD402.9mnMENAFN
(MENAFN) Dubai developer Nakheel posted flat second-quarter profit increase, which reached USD402.98mn in Q2.Moreover, the firm's profit for the first six months of this year was USD0.80bn, up from ...

 Jul 30 2016 - Wisconsin Mesothelioma Victims Center Now Offers a Diagnosed Person in Wisconsin a Free Service Designed to Ensure They Are Working Directly with The Nation's Best Lawyers For Better CompensationMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Press) Wisconsin Mesothelioma Victims Center Now Offers a Diagnosed Person in Wisconsin a Free Service Designed to Ensure They Are Working Directly with The Nation's Best Lawyers For Better ...

 Jul 30 2016 - 360Heros Announces Rebrand, Unveils New Name and Company DirectionMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Press) 360Heros Announces Rebrand, Unveils New Name and Company Direction 360Heros Inc, a company specializing in 360 video technology, has announced a rebrand. A new company name, ...

 Jul 30 2016 - Cinnamon Colomboscope as 'Testing Grounds' for art reflecting on the impact technology has on our worldMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Press) Cinnamon Colomboscope as ''Testing Grounds'' for art reflecting on the impact technology has on our world Screenshot from web browser extension and installation Blue Empire New ...

 Jul 30 2016 - Debut Single "White Lies" Released By Norwegian Duo "Language of Clouds"MENAFN Press
(MENAFN Press) Debut Single "White Lies" Released By Norwegian Duo "Language of Clouds" Language of Clouds - White Lies (cover) Language of Clouds (Linn Kathrin Taklo & ...

 Jul 30 2016 - UK Pet Insurance Industry Key Trends, Company Profiles and Opportunities to 2019 Now Available at ReportsWeb.comMENAFN Press
(MENAFN Press) UK Pet Insurance Industry Key Trends, Company Profiles and Opportunities to 2019 Now Available at ReportsWeb.com UK Pet Insurance Market Report 2016-2019 - Analysis, Trends, ...

more...


 





Google

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary


Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2014 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help