Over 600 migrants detained in Tripoli today
Photo Credit To AP

Over 600 migrants detained in Tripoli today

The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) said more than 600 migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers were detained in front of the former Community Day Center in Tripoli early this morning.

“We are alarmed by the detention of hundreds of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers, including women and children, that were camped out in front of the former Community Day Centre in Tripoli. Witnesses have told us they were met with violence this morning and that makeshift tents were burnt down,” said Dax Roque, the Norwegian Refugee Council’s Libya Country Director.

“This is the culmination of a disastrous situation that has deteriorated over the last few months. Since the mass detention of thousands of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers in October of last year, the situation for this population in Libya has only got worse,” he added.

“Our medical teams have been supporting those injured during this morning’s arrests, including one person suffering from a gunshot wound. We understand that hundreds of people, including many women and children, have now been sent onwards to detention centers where conditions are often already dire,” said Thomas Garofalo, the International Rescue Committee’s Country Director.

“As we enter a new year, the events unfolding should act as yet another reminder that the current situation for migrants and refugees in Libya is untenable and requires a new approach that respects the rights of people on the move,” he pointed out.

NRC and International Rescue Committee (IRC) called on the Libyan authorities to immediately release those detained – particularly women, children, and refugees – and protect them from further violence. They also urge the international community to immediately expand resettlement and other safe and regular pathways for refugees, asylum seekers and other migrants who wish to leave Libya.