One year on from her enforced disappearance: UNSMIL renews calls for an investigation into parliamentarian Siham Sergewa’s abduction

By Sami Zaptia.

On the one-year anniversary of her violent abduction in her home town of Benghazi, UNSMIL today renewed its calls for an investigation into Siham Sergiwa’s disappearance (Photo archive: Social Media)

London, 17 July 2020:

On the one-year anniversary of her disappearance, UNSMIL today called for an international investigation into the abduction of the member of parliament.

UNSMIL said ‘‘Today marks one year of the violent abduction and enforced disappearance of Member of Parliament, Siham Sergewa, from her home in Benghazi.

With no verified news on the fate or whereabouts of Ms Sergewa, the Mission remains highly concerned about her safety and security. UNSMIL stresses that the relevant authorities in the east are legally responsible for the safety and security of all people under their territorial control. The relevant Libyan authorities are required under international law to prevent and investigate such crimes, and bring the perpetrators to justice.

Enforced disappearance constitutes a  grave violation of international law including the right to recognition as a person before the law, the right to liberty and security of the person and the right not to be subjected to torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. It also violates or constitutes a grave threat to the right to life

This case is amongst several that underline the climate of impunity for violence against women in Libya. They have had a chilling impact on the work of women activists in Libya who dared to speak out or engage in public affairs and aim at silencing them.

Today we renew our call for a thorough, international investigation into the disappearance of Ms Sergewa aimed at establishing the facts, including the fate or whereabouts of Ms Sergewa, and bringing the perpetrators to justice’’.

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