On Wednesday, the United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator for Libya, Yacoub El Hillo, strongly condemned the killing of a 15-year old Eritrean asylum seeker in a refugee shelter in Tripoli.
“I am shocked and deeply saddened to learn the death of a young Eritrean asylum seeker yesterday at a shelter in Tripoli. Like many Libyans, migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers continue to pay the price of the protracted crisis in the country,” El Hillo said in a statement.
He also urged the Libyan authorities to fully investigate this incident and bring the perpetrators to justice. “Those responsible for these attacks must be held accountable,” he noted.
He pointed out that the incident is reported to have occurred in the early hours of Tuesday morning. A group of six men, carrying heavy objects and a gun entered the property, in the Gergaresh area, and began shooting in the shelter, killing the 15-year-old asylum seeker and injuring two others who received head wounds.
The UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, confirmed that the young victim had been awaiting resettlement out of Libya in a third country.
The UN official stated that around 5,600 Eritrean asylum seekers and refugees have been registered by UNHCR and live in urban areas in Libya, where conditions remain very challenging.
El-Hillo stressed that many refugees and migrants in Libya report that one of their biggest daily concerns is crime, including kidnapping for ransom and harassment by armed elements.
In January, two Eritrean asylum seekers were also shot dead at their accommodation in Tripoli.
In May, 30 migrants were shot dead and 11 others injured at a smuggling warehouse in Mizdah city. The UN had called for the authorities to launch an immediate investigation into the incident and bring those responsible to justice.