News / Africa

Nigerien Migrants Airlifted Out of Tripoli

African migrants awaiting evacuation by I.O.M., port of Benghazi, May 5, 2011.
African migrants awaiting evacuation by I.O.M., port of Benghazi, May 5, 2011.
Lisa Schlein

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) says it has airlifted 332 migrants from Niger out of the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

The migrants were stranded during the Libyan conflict that ousted Moammar Gadhafi. IOM officials say they are the first group of African migrants to be evacuated from Tripoli by air instead of by road or sea.

The group arrived in Niamey, the capital of Niger, earlier this week. Most of an estimated 2,000 Niger nationals still stranded in Tripoli also are seeking assistance to return home.

IOM spokesman Jumbe Omari Jumbe says his agency is planning further air evacuations for stranded African migrants from Chad, Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Nigeria, and Senegal.

"IOM is planning to speed up evacuations because of protection fears for stranded migrants who are exposed to arbitrary detention and harassment, and also because of the onset of cold temperatures at the moment," he said. "Most migrants live in damp and squalid conditions with no access to water, electricity and medicine, so there is a growing concern of health risks during this onset of the cold spell."

Jumbe says IOM is working with Libyan authorities to accelerate voluntary repatriation of thousands of migrants stranded in Tripoli and in Sabha to the south.

Migrant documentation is a particular challenge in Libya, he says, where few African countries have embassies, making it difficult to verify citizenship of an African national and issue temporary travel papers.

Jumbe says he does not know how many African migrants still remain in post-Gadhafi Libya.

Before the crisis, he says about one-half million African migrants were working in the country. Predominantly casual laborers - unskilled, semi-skilled and tradesmen - he says they were mostly young men in their 20s and 30s with no family members.

According to IOM, more than 90,000 Nigeriens so far have returned home from Libya. Officials say the organization and its partners have evacuated more than 314,000 migrants from Libya by land, sea and air, and that operations are set to continue for several more months.

You May Like

UN Watchdog Urges Israel to Probe Possible Gaza War Crimes

More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed in a 51-day war in Gaza, along with 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians in Israel More

New Kenyan 'Thin SIMs' Poised to Transform African Mobile Money

Equity's new technology is approved in African nation for one-year trial, though industry leader Safaricom says thin SIMs could lead to data theft and fraud More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid