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September 17, 2011 3:01 PM

Benghazi, Libya: A city in foul disrepair, but its people share euphoria

Benghazi may possess the most soulless cityscape on the Mediterranean, full of boxy new buildings that lack any architectural motif or sense of place and new dwellings with all the charm of high rises in Communist East Germany. "They're like prisons" says Ali Tarhouni, the new regime's finance and oil minister, of housing being built by Chinese contractors.

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