An impressive 21 years in the making, Felicity Prazak reveals the heartache and resolve behind her book, Libya’s Unknown Atrocity
Felicity Prazak was 36, her daughter Tallena three and son, Theodore, four, when she turned on the television during Christmas 1992 to discover that the flight her oil inspector husband Victor was on – LN1103 – had crashed on its approach to Tripoli, resulting in the death of all 157 passengers and crew.
At the height of Muammar Gaddafi’s power, the official explanation was that a Libyan Air Force MiG-23 piloted by Majid Tayari had collided with the Boeing 727. Then, 20 years later, after civil war had torn the country apart and Gaddafi’s reign had ended with a death as brutal as his regime, the imprisoned Tayari challenged the official version of events, claiming that flight LN1103 had been deliberately destroyed.
Now, Dubai-based art teacher Felicity has given further voice to claims that the flight was shot down on Gaddafi’s orders with the publication of her book Libya’s Unknown Atrocity.
‘I think it’s a remarkable story,’ she says when asked why she decided to write the book. ‘I was in an emotional state as I wrote it, putting down on paper the words I can’t get out.’
Felicity, 58, from Australia, started writing six years ago about her experience of uncovering the truth about flight LN1103. And with new developments coming to light almost every month since Gaddafi’s demise, Felicity is already planning a follow up, continuing the story of her struggle to find out exactly what happened on December 22, 1992.
‘I’ve written the book from my perspective, my struggle,’ she says. Warning of the book’s emotional content. ‘You might need to get your tissues. When I finished writing the book I was quite green,’ she admits.
‘I sent a few chapters off to agents, but had no takers. I emailed Jean Sasson who wrote Princess and she emailed back and said she would contact her editor. Although nothing came of that, out of a chain of three people I found an editor, who found a publisher. My journey has taken 21 years, but events had to unfold over that time. I had to tell this story.’
Libya’s Unknown Atrocity, Dhs82, Book World by Kinokuniya, The Dubai Mall (04 434 0111).