IOM Intercepts 409 Illegal Migrants off Libyan Coast in 7 days


On Monday, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) announced that it has intercepted and rescued 409 illegal migrants at sea and returned them to Libya.

The IOM added that it has managed to return 11,765 migrants, including 521 children, to their homeland in 2020, compared to 9,225 in 2019.

The IOM revealed that the death toll raised in 2020 to 306 in 2020 comparing to 270 last year.

Libya has become a preferred point of departure for thousands of people who want to cross the Mediterranean Sea toward Europe after the insecurity and chaos that followed the fall of its leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

Thousands of migrants, who were either rescued at sea or arrested by the authorities, remain detained inside overcrowded reception centres, despite repeated international calls to close those centres.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reiterated that Libya is not a safe port for immigrants.

The UNHCR said refugees and migrants attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea from Africa into Europe should not be returned to Libya.

“Last night, 77 persons were returned to Tripoli after being intercepted and rescued by Libyan Coast Guard,” the UNHCR tweeted on Sunday evening.