No to EU connivance in Libyan abuse and exploitation of foreign nationals
(Brussels, 13 November 2012) Amnesty International has called on the European Union to ensure that any co-operation with Libya on migration and asylum fully respects the rights of asylum-seekers, refugees and migrants. In a new briefing, We are foreigners, we have no rights, issued today, Amnesty International reveals that undocumented foreign nationals risk exploitation, arbitrary detention, beatings and torture. The briefing is based on fact-finding visits in Libya between May and September, and examines the plight of refugees, asylum-seekers and migrants there.
Despite well-documented evidence of abuse, the EU has resumed talks with Libya on migration-related issues, and Italy, seemingly oblivious to Libya’s human rights record, in April signed an agreement with Libya “to curtail the flow of migrants”.
“It’s shameful that Gaddafi-era abuses against foreigners, especially Sub-Saharan Africans, have not only persisted but worsened’’, said Nicolas Beger, Director of Amnesty International’s European Institutions Office. ‘’In the light of these abuses, it’s unacceptable for any European country, or the EU as a whole, to seek Libyan cooperation on migration control when it’s crystal clear what’s happening to migrants and asylum-seekers in Libya.”
Amnesty International believes that respect for human rights and a satisfactory system of assessing and recognising claims for international protection are crucial in determining the nature of future migration control agreements between European countries and Libya. It has also stressed the need for monitoring systems to ensure human rights are observed.
Between May and September, Amnesty International visited nine detention centres throughout Libya where the detainees said they had been subjected to torture and other ill-treatment, including beatings. Women are also vulnerable to sexual and gender-based violence in detention.
For the briefing, please see https://www.amnesty.eu/en/documents/all/
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