Libyan NGOs Call for “Reciprocity” to Passengers at Border Crossings

Libyan NGOs Call for “Reciprocity” to Passengers at Border Crossings
Libyan NGOs Call for “Reciprocity” to Passengers at Border Crossings

Human rights associations and institutions in Libya called on the Libyan authorities to apply the principle of reciprocity to all passengers from all countries. They also called upon the Libyan authorities to reconsider decisions on the provision of services at border crossings.

The National Commission for Human Rights in Libya (NCHRL) and other NGOs organised a dialogue session in Zuwara on Thursday. They discussed the rights of Libyan travellers and workers at ports.

The session reviewed the forms of violations committed against travellers and ways and mechanisms to address them.

The World Cooperation and Relief Organization told Asharq Al-Awsat that the human rights defenders who attended the dialogue session urged the Libyan authorities to “work to develop the ports to accommodate the increasing movement of travellers.”

Ali Al-Ghazali, Head of the Passports Department in Tobruk, called for visa fees to be imposed on Egyptian nationals, on the principle of reciprocity.

Al-Ghazali said in correspondence addressed to both the Head of the Steering Council of Tobruk and the Commander of the military region that “Libyan citizens while travelling to Egypt through the Salloum land port, were subjected to ill-treatment.”

He added that Egypt has complicated procedures and forced an exorbitant entry fee of 350 Egyptian pounds ($25 dollars), on all arrivals and departures through the Salloum border.

“Libyan citizens are forced to wait in the hall designated for stamping passports for long hours. The hall lacks the simplest facilities such as chairs or even a toilet,” he noted.

Libya has land borders with Egypt, Sudan, Chad, Niger, Algeria, and Tunisia.

Libya has been mired in conflict since Moammar Gaddafi was deposed and killed in a NATO-backed uprising in 2011. Plagued by divisions between competing institutions in the East and West, Libya remains split between rival forces, with two opposing executives in place since February.

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