Men, women and children gathered during rush hour traffic Monday to hold signs and chant in condemnation of Col. Moammar Gadhafi.
About 75 men, women and children stood on the southeast corner of NW 23 and Classen Avenue as the sun set.
Many held signs insulting Gadhafi and demanding he step down.
The Libyan flag was flown, and at least one protester held a sign with photographs of Libyans slain in recent skirmishes with military and police.
Dozens screamed in unison, “free, free Libya,” “stop, stop the massacre” and “down, down with Gadhafi.”
Ameen Emneina, 23, said he came to the United States on a scholarship in fall 2008. His mother, father, three brothers and two sisters are in the city of Benghazi, where Emneina was raised.
Emneina last spoke to his family about 4 p.m. Sunday, he said.
His brothers and many close friends have taken to the streets and are prepared to lose their lives trying to topple Gadhafi's regime, he said.
Emneina could hear gunfire in the background during their last phone conversation, he said.
“They didn't start with rubber bullets. They started right away with machine guns,” Emneina said.
“Everyone is armed with swords, butcher knives and rocks,” he said.
There were very few firearms available to protesters, but he said he'd heard reports that citizens were using construction equipment to break down the walls outside of military compounds controlled by Gadhafi and his sons.
“At the beginning, I was worried. But now I'm proud,” he said.
“This is just the beginning. Benghazi is now free, but Tripoli is under siege. The Libyan system is like a tribal system. If they kill one of your people, it's shame on you if you don't do something,” Emneina said.
Taruk Arukhma, 35, is from a small town in southeast Libya, about 80 miles from Tripoli. He is studying English at Oklahoma City University.
“They said, ‘Forty-two years, it is enough.' So this crazy man and his sons started killing people,” he said.
Arukhma said that the only functioning media outlet in the country is run by the state, and officials are not providing an accurate image of the violence within the country.
“We're asking all the human rights organizations and the U.N. to do their jobs, to do whatever they can in the terrible situation in my home country,” Arukhma said.
He said the Libyan people had tried to revolt against Gadhafi in the past, but those caught were killed or imprisoned.
“We will not get another chance,” Arukhma said.
Other Oklahomans also are interested in what's happening in the North African nation.
Matt Porter, 34, of Oklahoma City, is the chief financial officer of Bronco Drilling. He spent time in Tripoli in 2008 on business for his company.
He said he thinks ultimately what is happening in Libya will turn out for the good of the people protesting for democracy, but he's sorry for the pain in the near-term.
“You've got human rights being neglected,” he said. “It will take time and be difficult, but ultimately they have such a potential.”
Contributing: Staff Writer Tricia Pemberton