The turning point for the bill came at a conference in Tripoli on 4 May, Gaida says. Her NGO and a Libyan one, the Observatory on Gender in Crisis, had arranged for one of the women freed by Hussein to be present.
Defying the taboos of Libyan society, she stood up and – in appalling detail – told her story.
"She was one of three sisters who, in the early stages of the revolution, had put an anti-Gaddafi post on Facebook," says Gaida. "They were arrested. For nine months, she was sexually tortured with everything you can imagine. When you say rape you think of a man violating a woman. But this was far, far worse."
By the time the young woman had finished her account, the Libyan minister of justice and several other men present were in tears. "It was then that she turned to the minister and asked him: 'What will you do for us?'", Gaida recalls. "The minister stood up and said: 'You and your sisters are the pearls in the crown of the new Libya'."
The idea that the survivors of rape might be thought of as anything but a source of disgrace was a drastic break with the past, and helped the bill being pushed by the Observatory on Gender in Crisis to get the government's backing.
"The main problem once the law has been passed will still be a cultural one," says Atigha. "We know many victims prefer to keep what happened a secret. One thing we want to do is to ensure cases are dealt with by female investigating magistrates."