By Libya Herald reporters.
Tunis, 6 April 2016:
UNSMIL has demanded an independent investigation into the shooting dead of four migrants during an . . .[restrict]apparent mass escape attempt from what it described as an inhumane and over-crowded Zawia detention centre. During the incident 20 others were wounded and a guard injured.
UNSMIL deputy chief, Ali Al-Za’tari said that the 1 April killings at the Al-Nasr detention centre should be the subject of a full, impartial and independent enquiry. He welcomed the fact that the Zawia prosecutor had begun an investigation and started questioning witnesses.
Za’tari said: “ This incident yet again highlights the deplorable conditions endured by migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees in Libya; many of them fleeing persecution, abuses or poverty in their own countries.”
He said that he hoped that the Government of National Accord would urgently address the dire humanitarian situation of particularly vulnerable groups in Libya including migrants.
“In the meantime, all those with effective authority of the ground should protect migrants from abuse and exploitation and put an end to their prolonged detention in horrid conditions.”
UNSMIL said the Al-Nasr camp was thought to contain some 1,200 migrants, including eight women and two children, all from sub-Saharan Africa. Besides severe overcrowding, there were food shortages, a lack of other basic necessities and no access to any medical care.
This March the Al-Nasr centre had supposedly come under the control of the Department of Combatting Illegal Migration. Yet UNSMIL said that migrants picked up at sea or in house raids or after ID checks faced torture and ill-treatment in centres run by the DCIM and other armed groups. These crimes included beatings, suspension and forced labour. [/restrict]