By Libya Herald staff.
Tripoli, 31 December 2014:
More than 4,000 families from Kikla are now living as internally displaced people (IDPs) after . . .[restrict]fleeing from their homes during fighting in the Jebel Nafusa town in October and November.
At least 2,616 families are living in Ghariyan, some 60 kilometres east of Kikla, according to a programme manager with the International Medical Corps (IMC) Abdulrahman F. Alfituri. The displaced families have taken up temporary residence in schools, empty houses, and half-finished buildings – mostly construction projects abandoned after fighting broke out in Tripoli in the summer.
“Ghariyan Local Council is trying to help as much as possible and they have provided lots of very good support, especially food and basic necessities,” Alfituri told the Libya Herald. “Other organisations and the [Tripoli-based] government want to help too, but the humanitarian support sector in Libya suffers from a lack of co-ordination – people often don’t actually know how to help.”
The evacuation of Kikla was a drawn-out affair, with fighting around the town escalating in October. “Many families left early on, taking possessions with them, as the conflict in Kikla started slowly, meaning there was time for families to plan,” Alfituri said. “Other families didn’t want to leave at all. Some were killed in the fighting and others escaped, but left everything there.”
During the conflict, the IMC tried to find ways to get aid to the mountain town, consulting with different partners, he explained. “No-one could assure our safety and there was a high risk that air workers could be kidnapped by either side, so we just couldn’t go.”
Most of the displaced families are now in locations where they are at least able to receive aid. Five days ago, the IMC arrived in Ghariyan to deliver essential humanitarian aid, including blankets, food and medical supplies. The UNHCR, which frequently works in partnership with IMC, provided mattresses and kitchen sets.
The situation in Ghariyan remains unstable, however. Although there is no fighting on the ground, the Libyan National Army has carried out sporadic airstrikes on locations around the town.
Other IDPs from Kikla are staying in Misrata and in two locations on the outskirts of Tripoli. The Military Academy in Janzour and a camp near the Airport Road. The IMC is planning to make visits to these communities in the coming weeks. [/restrict]