The refugee camp set up in 2011 by UNHCR in Ras Jedir I Photo: ANSA/Ciro Fusco
The refugee camp set up in 2011 by UNHCR in Ras Jedir I Photo: ANSA/Ciro Fusco

The security situation in Libya has worsened and the region is bracing itself for a possible crisis. Tunisia has already prepared an emergency medical plan to deal with the situation should the violence escalate and spill into its territory.

The volatile security situation owing to renewed violence in Libya has prompted Tunisian authorities to prepare an emergency plan to deal with the possible influx of migrants and refugees should the situation in Libya further deteriorate. Mongi Slim from the Tunisian Red Crescent told TAP news agency that the local authorities have coordinated with international organizations to develop an emergency plan.

The management at the Ben Guerdane hospital in south-east Tunisia, declared a state of emergency following the recent events in Libya. It announced an action plan to deal with a high number of casualties in the event of any emergency. “This plan foresees the immediate calling in of doctors and paramedics in the event of wounded people arriving from Libya and it ensures the provision of necessary medicines and blood,” said hospital director Mohamed Ghandri.

Meanwhile, sources on the ground confirmed that entry traffic from Libya has increased in recent days at the Ras Jedir crossing.

NGO concerned about the situation, but chose to remain

Volunteers from the Italian NGO Intersos said that they were concerned about the deployment of heavy arms and ammunition and the dangerous security situation in Libya. However, the NGO will continue to carry out their emergency humanitarian aid work in Tripoli, Sebha and Benghazi.

Intersos has various projects in Libya, mainly with minors as well as displaced people. Cesare Fermi, director of the migration unit for Intersos, which operates in Libya, Tunisia, and Greece, told SIR news agency that at the moment the organization has neither reduced any of its operations nor has it adopted any alternate procedures. “However, we prefer not to call back our expatriate personnel, who left Libya for the Christmas holidays,” Fermi said.

He added further, “we have received security related instructions that advise us not to return to Tripoli at the moment. But about 30 of our Libyan workers continue to operate, with the necessary precautions,” he said.

Various humanitarian organizations operational in Libya have either called back their workers completely or prefer to maintain a low profile for security reasons. “We all hope that a political solution to the Libyan crisis can be found,” Fermi said. “But with the possible intervention of the Turkish-Syrian troops, the intensity of the conflict is only going to increase. Heavy weaponry has arrived in Libya and the outlook isn't very optimistic,” he concluded.

 

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