2018 Libya Humanitarian Needs Overview (December 2017)

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PEOPLE AFFECTED 1.6M (25% of population)

PEOPLE IN NEED 1.1M (17% of population)


Since mid-2014, fighting in populated areas continues across Libya, leading to civilian casualties, damage to civilian infrastructure and displacement. In the last 12 months, an estimated 1.62 million people¹ have been directly affected. According to the latest UN and partners’ needs analysis, 1.1 million people, of whom 378,000 are children and 307,000 are women of reproductive age (15-49), require life-saving humanitarian assistance and protection.

In 2017, more than 80,000 people returned to their home communities. To date, there are still around 217,000 internally displaced people in Libya, while some 278,000 people have returned to their places of origin.

Libya continues to be the main point of departure for people attempting to cross the Mediterranean. IOM reports that, as of 26 October, at least 2,824 people have died or gone missing in the attempt to cross to Europe by sea in 2017. Arrivals report exploitation, abuse, sexual violence, discrimination, unlawful killings and torture in Libya by armed groups, including those affiliated to State institutions. They have no, or limited, access to services and live in fear of capture and arbitrary detention.
Libya is also a destination country for migrants on temporary economic and circular migration routes from neighboring and West African countries. Over 400,000 migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers in Libya are particularly exposed to abuse and human rights violations as proliferating, armed groups engage in smuggling, trafficking and exploitation.

Recent developments have provided some momentum to a stalled political process, but with no clear solutions as the country remains divided between rival administrations, leaving national and local institutions largely unable to provide protection and basic services.

The economic situation continues to deteriorate, further eroding both the authorities’ ability to provide services and as well as the livelihoods of communities and families. Living conditions are worsening as cash, food, fuel, water, electricity, health care and public services and supplies become increasingly scarce. Weak rule of law is leaving vulnerable civilians and marginalised groups unprotected. Armed groups, including those affiliated to the State, continue to unlawfully detain thousands of Libyans and foreign nationals in substandard conditions, where they are vulnerable to torture and other abuses.

Contamination by explosive remnants of war (ERW) and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) as a result of the ongoing conflict are threatening the lives of civilians and hampering the ability of the humanitarian community to carry out humanitarian activities.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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