By Libya Herald reporters.
Tunis, 17 August 2017:
The three thousand refugee families in Zintan were straining the town’s limited resources and should be allowed to return to Tripoli, the new UNSMIL chief Ghassan Salamé was urged in the town today.
His visit to Zintan was the first by an UNSMIL head in three years. Greeted by the mayor Mustafa Barasi, Salamé was told that the Internally Displaced People should be able to go back safely to their home, principally in the capital.
Salamé, who was travelling with his deputy Maria Ribeiro, said he was there to listen. Members of the town’ crisis committee pressed him to help with the restoration of basic services. He also met local elders, the Military Council and civil society members.
“I commend Zintan’s efforts towards national reconciliation and building a united, sovereign Libya,”he said at a press conference, adding “I am proud to be the first SRSG [Special Representative of the Secretary-General] to visit the city in three years and hear from the Zintanis in Zintan”.
He ended his tour of the town with a visit to the General Hospital where he was told about the difficulties in maintaining proper healthcare. The UN was asked to support the provision of mobile clinics to ease the strain on existing medial facilities.