On 2 July 2019, dozens of migrants and refugees were killed and injured following an airstrike on a detention center belonging to the Directorate for Combating Illegal Migration (DCIM). The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) evacuated on Thursday a group of 79 asylum-seekers from Libya to Rwanda for the first time in nearly a year. Relatives of the 18 fishermen from Mazaro del Vallo, Sicily, seized by Libyan forces in September 2020, gather in front of a banner reading "Free the fishermen of Mazara" | Andreas Solaro/AFP via Getty Images The renewal, and the initiative in general, has been knocked by rights groups, given that the Coast Guard regularly returns the people it intercepts at sea to migrant detention centres back on land. After rescuing 265 migrants in two operations in the Mediterranean Sea within three days, Italy has allowed the Spanish flagged rescue ship Open Arms to bring its passengers to the Italian island of Sicily. The Ministry of Interior reported that the number of migrants deported from Libya during the year 2020, reached 5,360 migrants. During the three years since original deal was struck, at least 40,000 people, including thousands of children, have been intercepted at sea, returned to Libya and exposed to unimaginable suffering, Tens of thousands of refugees and migrants are trapped in an escalating war-zone, By supporting the Libyan authorities in stopping sea crossings and containing people in Libya, Italy has made itself complicit in this abuse, ONE YEAR TOO LONG: BURUNDIANS ARBITRARILY DETAINED FOR THEIR JOURNALISM, Russia: Authorities use farcical surprise “hearing” to keep Aleksei Navalny behind bars, Tunisia: Authorities must refrain from using unnecessary and excessive force against protesters, Russia: Aleksei Navalny becomes prisoner of conscience after arrest on arrival in Moscow. Susan Rice to be in Biden White House . The move drew fire, in part because some European politicians said the mission would withdraw its ships if they proved to be a draw for migrants leaving Libya’s shores and hoping to be rescued. Italy should demand that Libya release all the refugees and migrants currently held in its detention centres, and that it close those centres once and for all.”. In a letter dated 13 February and published this week, the Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights urged Italy to suspend its work with the Coast Guard despite the recent renewal of its agreement, saying, “I am gravely concerned about certain types of assistance provided to Libya, in particular to the Libyan Coast Guard, which have resulted in increased interceptions of migrants and asylum seekers at sea, and their subsequent return to Libya, where they are subjected to serious human rights violations.”. Explore more on Italy Migrants. The EU also continued to back the Libyan Coast Guard , which intercepted more than 10,000 people , dragging them back to detention centres where thousands disappeared from the official radar into a shadowy system of extortion and … 2020. The governments decided to extend the deal October 2019. Stay on top of Libya latest developments on the ground with Al Jazeera’s fact-based news, exclusive video footage, photos and updated maps. Libya news - updated 24/7/365. Earlier this month, Italy renewed the Memorandum of Understanding that governs its cooperation with the GNA authorities. The Red Crescent oversees three shelters in Medenine — one for migrants, one for asylum seekers and one for women and children — with the support of International Organization for Migration and the U.N. However, the source said, in some “emergency situations” where migrants have been completely without food, the WFP has stepped in to help. Permissions Migrants float on a rubber dinghy during a rescue operation by the MSF-SOS MEDITERRANÉE-run Ocean Viking ship off the Libyan coast, 18 February 2020. The UN agency also said it provided assistance to another 79 people who were returned to Libya by coast guards, while "eight others are reported missing at sea." Cookie Statement “They feel safer here than they did in Libya, but at the same time they feel stuck.” Word is out. Libya is unable to care for its own population, let alone the tens of thousands of migrant workers its struggling economy relies on. 98 Europe-bound migrants who were rescued by a commercial ship flying a Portuguese flag have been returned to Libya via the Libyan navy. Untold numbers of households from Chad to Egypt to Sudan depend on remittances from Libya. IOM estimates that in February 2020 there were at least 654,000 migrants in Libya. It also explained that 316 migrants have died while 417 others went But as the weather improves and the sea is calmer, migrants are still attempting journeys from Libya. These include 947 people intercepted this month alone,” said Marie Struthers, Amnesty International’s Europe Director. Italy has paved the way for tens of thousands of undocumented migrants to become legal residents by applying for work permits. The Ministry said in a statement that the most recent flight was destined for the state of Rwanda and left on December 29, 2020 accommodating 130 migrants as part of the humanitarian return program. The Italian government should suspend all support to the Libyan Coast Guard until Libya commits to a clear plan to fully respect migrants’ safety and rights, Human Rights Watch said today. Italian fishermen held in Libya freed after more than 100 days December 17, 2020 8:23 pm By Hannah Roberts US and Turkey target each other in NATO meeting December 1, 2020 10:50 pm By David M ... 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