From file: Migrants picked up at sea by the Libyan coast guard | Photo:Hazem Ahmed / AP File
From file: Migrants picked up at sea by the Libyan coast guard | Photo:Hazem Ahmed / AP File

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) has shared its latest numbers on returns to Libya. Almost 300 migrants were returned to Libya in one week, taking the total number of returns thus far this year to more than 10,200.

IOM said it had registered the return of 299 migrants to Libya in the period between July 3 and 9. This number includes 16 minors, who were apprehended or rescued off the Libyan coast while trying to reach Europe across the Mediterranean Sea.

According to IOM numbers, at least 175 migrants departing from Libya are confirmed to have died at sea since the beginning of 2022. At least 634 are considered to have gone missing on the same route.


IOM publishes regular updates on the numbers of migrants intercepted at sea and returned to Libya by the country's coast guard. It also keeps count of fatalities at sea.

Read more: Rape, abuse, murder: New UN report on Libya highlights migrants' suffering in painful detail

'Appalling conditions' in Libya

Last year, the IOM — along with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) — issued a statement saying that "no one should be returned to Libya after being rescued at sea. Under international maritime law, rescued individuals should be disembarked at a place of safety."

The same statement also read: "Migrants and refugees disembarked in Libya often end up in appalling conditions where they may be exposed to abuse and extortion. Others go missing and are unaccounted for, raising fears that some may have been channeled into human trafficking networks."

Read more: IOM: Libya returns 590 migrants in under a week

with IOM

 

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