Saturday 19 August 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 08/18/17)
Security forces in eastern Libya said on Thursday they had arrested the commander of an elite forces unit who is sought by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for allegedly executing dozens of prisoners. The general command of the Libyan National Army (LNA), the force that controls most of eastern Libya, said the commander, Mahmoud al-Werfalli, was being investigated by a military prosecutor. "We inform you that the defendant in your judicial case, Mahmoud al-Werfalli, is under investigation for the cases against him by the general military prosecutor and is now under arrest," the LNA said in a statement. Werfalli is wanted for allegedly executing dozens of prisoners in the spring and summer of this year,...
(AL Jazeera 08/18/17)
Unclear if Mahmoud al-Werfalli will be handed over to ICC, which issued his arrest warrant for 'murder as a war crime'. A senior Libyan military commander allied with Khalifa Haftar and suspected of involvement in the deaths of 33 people in eastern Benghazi has been arrested. The general command of the Libyan National Army (LNA) - the force that controls most of eastern Libya, including key oil ports - said on Thursday that Mahmoud al-Werfalli was being investigated by a military prosecutor. The arrest comes after the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a warrant of arrest for Werfalli earlier this week, accusing him of "murder as a war crime in the context of the non-international armed conflict in Libya". The...
(AFP (eng) 08/17/17)
Libyan authorities on Thursday repatriated 135 Nigerian migrants, including women and children, who had made failed attempts to cross the Mediterranean to Europe, an official said. "We are organising... the voluntary repatriation of 135 clandestine Nigerian migrants who were rescued offshore by the coastguard," said Hosni Abu Ayanah of the Libyan government agency tackling illegal migration. The first group of 75 men and 10 women gathered Thursday in downtown Tripoli to board buses with metal grills towards the capital's Mitiga airport.
(AFP (eng) 08/17/17)
Libya is not "preventing" NGOs from carrying out migrant rescue operations off its coast, but has set up a coastal search and rescue zone to "organise" their work, its navy said Wednesday. The navy last week ordered unauthorised foreign vessels to stay out of Libya's coastal zone, a measure it said targeted NGOs carrying out search and rescue missions for migrants headed towards Europe. Several NGOs including Doctors without Borders (MSF), Germany's Sea-Eye and Britain's Save the Children have since suspended their operations. Tripoli has long accused the NGOs of collaboration with people traffickers. "We did not announce any prohibited zone, nor did we prevent any party or organisation from carrying out clear
(Reuters (Eng) 08/16/17)
The Libyan coastguard intercepted a humanitarian rescue ship in the Mediterranean on Tuesday, ordering it to sail to Tripoli or risk being targeted, a Reuters photographer aboard said. It was the latest in a series of incidents in which non-governmental organizations (NGOs), operating on the edge of Libyan waters to rescue migrants trying to cross from Africa to Italy, have been threatened by the Libyan coastguard. The Golfo Azzurro, operated by Spanish humanitarian organization Proactiva Open Arms, was repeatedly contacted...
(The Libya Observer 08/16/17)
"This warrant sends a clear message that those who commit or order horrendous crimes are not above the law and will not go unpunished." Amnesty International’s North Africa Research Director, Heba Morayef, said. The International Criminal Court (ICC) has issued an arrest warrant of the notorious senior commander of Al-Saiqa Force of Dignity Operation, Mahmoud Al-Werfalli, over war crimes he committed in and around Benghazi. The arrest warrant that was issued by the Hague-based tribunal on Tuesday, said "Al-Werfalli is...
(The Guardian 08/14/17)
MSF, Save the Children and Germany’s Sea Eye suspend operations after repeated clashes with Libyan coastguard vessels. Three NGOs have suspended migrant rescues in the Mediterranean because of the increasingly hostile stance of the Libyan authorities and coastguard. Save the Children and Germany’s Sea Eye have joined Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) in halting operations because they feel their crews can no longer work safely in what Sea Eye called a “changed security situation in the western Mediterranean”. Libya has asserted...
(Bloomberg 08/14/17)
The U.S. will probably maintain its current levels of aid to Africa despite President Donald Trump’s proposals to slash funding, according to Bill Gates, the world’s richest man. Trump said in May his government would no longer allocate funding for family planning, a move that has the potential to undermine aid programs in the poorest countries in the world. However, with Congress in control of the budget, it’s unlikely that all cuts proposed by the Trump administration will go ahead...
(AFP (eng) 08/10/17)
The Libyan navy on Thursday ordered foreign vessels to stay out of a coastal "search and rescue zone" for migrants headed for Europe, a measure it said targeted NGOs. "We want to send out a clear message to all those who infringe Libyan sovereignty and lack respect for the coastguard and navy," Libyan navy spokesman General Ayoub Qassem told a news conference in Tripoli. General Abdelhakim Bouhaliya, commander of the Tripoli naval base where the conference was held, said that...
(AL Jazeera 08/10/17)
Rights body slams the 'culture of impunity' after documenting third case of killings in Benghazi since July. A human rights group has held the Libyan National Army (LNA) and its allied armed groups responsible for misconducts that amount to crimes against humanity in the country's second city of Benghazi. In a statement published on Tuesday, the Human Rights Solidarity organisation based in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, called for urgent action to stop what it called mass killings. The statement came...
(The Libya Observer 08/09/17)
UNICEF organized a workshop in Tunis under the title Strengthening the Management of Immunizations in Libya, in partnership with the Ministry of Health and the National Center for Combating Communicable Diseases, in which it agreed to vaccinate 1.8 million Libyan children against polio and measles in October. During the workshop, UNICEF disclosed the results of a recent study that had examined the situation of water and sanitation in schools, which included 140 schools in Libya. It was found that the...
(Voice of America 08/09/17)
The thick-set 23-year-old Nigerian woman exudes strength, keen to overcome what she suffered in Libya and Italy before she escaped from the shadows in Rome and jumped on a train heading for Ancona on Italy’s Adriatic coast. Not that she knew the train’s destination before boarding — she just wanted to flee her tormenters, run from beatings and sexual abuse. But it will take longer than a three-and-half-hour railway trip to forget the torments of the past. Anna (the name...
(AFP (eng) 08/08/17)
The UN's new envoy to Libya on Tuesday endorsed Italy's drive to stem the flow of migrants leaving the north African state for Europe, despite misgivings among human rights groups. Rights campaigners fear Italy's focus on strengthening the Libyan coastguard to ensure boatloads of migrants are intercepted before reaching international waters could place thousands of people with a right to asylum at serious risk. But Ghassam Salame, a former Lebanese culture minister appointed in June to head UN operations in...
(AFP (eng) 08/08/17)
When a cash crisis struck the war-torn North African country of Libya, many people were forced to queue for days to withdraw their savings. But electronic payments systems set up to tackle the dearth of cash have struggled to gain credibility amid accusations of abuse. Said Fayez Fadlallah, 35, uses a mobile phone app to pay for a trolley-full of groceries at a large supermarket in second city Benghazi. "Now I don't have to spend hours or even days queueing...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/08/17)
Residents of Derna in east Libya say they are facing critical shortages after Khalifa Haftar's Libyan National Army (LNA) tightened its longstanding siege around the city last week. Haftar's eastern-based LNA, one of a number of factions that have vied for power in Libya since a 2011 uprising ended Muammar Gaddafi's four-decade rule, is waging a military campaign against a coalition of Islamist militants and ex-rebels known as the Derna Mujahideen Shura Council (DMSC) that controls Derna. Attention has shifted...
(Voice of America 08/08/17)
Italian government ministers are becoming increasingly divided over risky naval efforts to curb the numbers of migrants who have landed at the country’s ports. At issue — what the mission should be for two Italian naval ships set to be deployed in Libyan waters. Several ministers object to the idea of Italian sailors turning back mainly sub-Saharan asylum-seekers — either directly or indirectly in coordination with Libyan Coast Guard ships, some of whom are suspected of being in league with...
(AFP (eng) 08/04/17)
Traumatised by war, their jihadist parents either killed or missing, 28 children have found solace in each other at a Red Crescent centre in Libya's third city Misrata. Whether they're jumping up and down on mattresses or playing in the yard, the boys and girls stick together, like siblings, the older ones looking out for the little ones. Last December, fighters loyal to Libya's UN-backed Government of National Accord, many of them from Misrata, prised the Mediterranean coastal city of...
(Ahram Online 08/04/17)
Lieutenant General Mahmoud Hegazy held talks with rival Libyan delegations to discuss reconciliation. Egypt’s army chief of staff, Lieutenant General Mahmoud Hegazy, held meetings with rival Libyan delegations in Cairo this week to discuss reconciliation, the official military spokesman announced on Thursday. Hegazy, the head of the committee assigned to mediate between the Libyan factions in Egypt, met Libyan delegations from the cities of Misurata and Barca, and held talks with them for three days this, according to military spokesman...
(AL Jazeera 08/04/17)
Commander in control of the east issues orders to naval bases after Italy sends ship to halt people smugglers' boats. The commander of Libya's self-styled national army has ordered his naval forces to confront any vessel entering the country's waters without permission. The move by the renegade general, Khalifa Haftar, which was announced on Wednesday, comes after Italy instructed its navy to stop refugee boats heading to Europe from Libya. An Italian naval ship, Commandante Borsini, entered Libyan waters on...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/03/17)
Italy began a limited naval mission on Wednesday to help Libya's coastguard curb migrant flows, which have become a source of political friction before national elections expected early next year. An Italian patrol boat entered Libyan waters and headed towards the port of Tripoli within minutes of a vote in Italy's parliament authorizing the deployment. A second vessel was expected to join it in the coming days. Italy announced the operation last week, saying it had been requested by Libya's...

Pages