UNHCR urges Libyan authorities to approve evacuation of refugees

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on Monday urged the Libyan authorities to approve a humanitarian evacuation of 124 refugees from Libya to Rwanda.

“UNHCR in Libya regrets that the humanitarian evacuation to Rwanda of 124 refugees, initially scheduled for 25 April, had to be postponed several times. It is pending approval of the Libyan authorities,” UNHCR said in a statement.

“There are most vulnerable refugees, including former detainees, women, children, and survivors of human trafficking,” it said.

“UNHCR urges the Libyan authorities to formally approve this humanitarian evacuation, in light of the immense suffering the refugees have gone through and the distress they continue to endure. Meanwhile, UNHCR informed all asylum seekers of this unfortunate delay, and is providing them with counselling and humanitarian assistance,” it said.

The UNHCR expressed gratitude to Rwanda for being able to provide solutions for evacuations out of Libya.

“Since 2017, over 6,500 refugees departed Libya through humanitarian evacuation or resettlement to third countries,” the UNHCR said in the statement.