UNHCR Flash Update Libya (17 - 23 February 2018) [EN/AR]

Report
from UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Published on 23 Feb 2018

Key figures

180,937 Libyans currently internally displaced (IDPs)

334,662 returned IDPs (returns registered in 2016 - 2017)

46,730 registered refugees and asylumseekers in the State of Libya

5,258 persons arrived in Italy by sea in 2018

174 monitoring visits to detention centres so far in 2018 (1,080 in 2017).

843 asylum-seekers and refugees released from detention so far in 2018 (1,428 in 2017)

Highlights

Since November 2017, UNHCR has evacuated over 1,200 refugees and asylum-seekers from Libya. The latest flight from Tripoli to Niger departed on 19 February with 127 refugees and asylum-seekers on board. So far, a total of 897 refugees and asylum-seekers were evacuated to UNHCR’s Emergency Transit Mechanism (ETM) in Niger, 312 departed to Italy and two departed to UNHCR’s Emergency Transit Centre in Romania. UNHCR continues to process refugees for direct resettlement from Libya to third countries. Since October 2017, UNHCR has processed and referred 460 individuals for resettlement, out of which 333 individuals have already been submitted to different resettlement countries.

On 22 February, a high level mission of the United Nations (UN), African Union (AU), and European Union (EU) visited Tripoli to assess the situation of refugees, migrants and internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Libya. The delegation met with Libyan authorities and visited a detention centre and a Tawerghan IDP settlement in Tripoli. The UNHCR Special Envoy for the Central Mediterranean situation, Vincent Cochetel, and the UNHCR Representative to Libya, Roberto Mignone, participated in the mission. The task force acknowledged the progress made by UNHCR and IOM in supporting refugees and migrants in Libya.

Populations Movements

On 19 February, 517 refugees and migrants disembarked in Libya, including 400 in Zwara and 117 in Tripoli. So far in 2018, 2,556 refugees and migrants were disembarked in Libya by the Libyan Coast Guard (LCG) following a rescue/interception operation at sea. UNHCR and partner the International Medical Corps provided medical assistance both at disembarkation points and in detention centres, following the transfer of individuals.

UNHCR Response

In coordination with UN agencies and local partners, UNHCR continues to respond to the needs of over 1,220 IDPs from Tawergha stranded in Qararat al Qataf and in Harawa. Since the beginning of the crisis in early February, UNHCR staff and its partner LibAid have been on the ground in both locations and distributed non-food items, winter clothing, drinking water and tents. As the lead agency for the protection of IDPs, UNHCR will continue to advocate and maximise efforts with humanitarian partners on behalf of IDPs and to provide humanitarian assistance until those displaced can find durable solutions in conditions of voluntariness, dignity and safety.

UNHCR through its partner LibAid distributed winter relief items to over 2,370 IDPs and returnees in Benghazi. The distribution has comprised of heaters, blankets, hygiene kits, solar lamps, school bags and kitchen sets for families living in areas north of Benghazi.

As part of UNHCR’s quick impact projects, this week UNHCR delivered eight water tanks to seven hospitals and clinics in Sabratha and Azzawya in coordination with local authorities and partners. The tanks will facilitate the water supply for these medical facilities, allowing for water desalination and ensuring the availability of drinking water.