On Sunday, Deputy Head of the Libyan Presidential Council, Abdullah Al-Lafi met with notorious Libyan human trafficker, Abdel-Rahman Milad (Al-Bidja), at the Naval Academy in Janzour.
Al-Bidja has been on the UN Security Council’s Sanctions Committee list since June 2018, for his involvement in human trafficking and fuel smuggling. He was also subject to a special bulletin by Interpol, and an arrest warrant for his arrest was issued in April 2019, by the Tripoli Public Prosecution Office. All on similar charges of human trafficking and fuel smuggling.
Al-Bidja hails from the city of Al-Zawiya, and has a long record of crimes in western Libya. He was appointed as an officer at the naval academy, and was assigned to head the Coast Guard in the western region by the outgoing Government of National Accord (GNA),
In traffickers’ camps as well as official detention centers, thousands of migrants are tortured for extortion purposes, and women often suffer sexual violence. A number of underage girls have claimed they had been raped in a prison run by the Ministry of the Interior in Tripoli.
In April, Al-Bidja was released and several migrants spoke up about their experiences at the hands of this “feared boss” of the Libyan coast guard in Zawiya.
“A monster, who is capable of shooting a human being as he would shoot an animal,” Mamadou, who fled Libya to return to his home country Guinea, told InfoMigrants news website.
“Even the Libyans don’t dare contradict him because he is known to be very violent with them too,” says Ali, another Guinean who spent three months in the Zawiya prison, run by Al-Bidja and his cousin Osama.
Al-Bidja has a long record of human trafficking crimes in western Libya. Born in 1990 in the city of Zawiya, he worked as a Lieutenant Officer assigned by the Government of National Accord (GNA), to head the Coast Guard in the western region. He is also the Head of Zawiya’s most notorious militia, known for its human trafficking activities.