Ivorian migrants returning from Libya arrive in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, 22 November 2017. 166 Ivorian migrants were repatriated from Libya by Ivory Coast. Photo | EPA/LEGNAN KOULA
Ivorian migrants returning from Libya arrive in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, 22 November 2017. 166 Ivorian migrants were repatriated from Libya by Ivory Coast. Photo | EPA/LEGNAN KOULA

The UNHCR reports that it has successfully evacuated over 1,300 refugees from Libya since November 2017, while the International Organization for Migration has helped 15,000 migrants return to their countries of origin with support from the EU and the African Union.

Since November 2017, and with support from the EU, the UNHCR has evacuated over 1,300 refugees from Libya ahead of resettlement. The announcement came during talks underway in Brussels between EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi. On the agenda are the EU-UNHCR partnership in dealing with protection issues of migrants in Libya, including the EU, African Union and UN task force. The two also underscored the need to speed up resettlement from Niger.

16,000 migrants helped in Libya

Some 16,000 migrants have received assistance in Libya from an AU-EU-UN joint task force. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has helped 15,000 migrants return to their countries of origin with EU support and the active cooperation of the AU. The work will continue in the coming weeks.

In February, the EU adopted an additional 115 million euro package to support the task force's work, which will be used by the IOM and the UNHCR to provide protection for migrants and refugees in Libya and to evacuate another 3,800 people in need of international protection. The new measures will also help reintegrate migrants in their countries and to improve assistance in the Sahel and the Lake Chad area.

Council of Europe wants better information for children

On the issue of the protection of minors, the Council of Europe has recently reported that the access to and quality of information for migrant minors must be improved, while highlighting the importance of ensuring that this information be available in countries of origin. The document, which contains some examples of best practices, underscores that the information must concern not only guaranteed rights but also the difficulties and dangers that migrants might encounter.

The Council of Europe has said that the most effective way to convey the information is through direct verbal exchanges with properly trained professionals who are trusted by the children. It stressed that the brochures and other printed material should use clear language and that they must be used to complement information received verbally. The report also notes that there is a need for reliable information exchange between migrant children, including through the use of social networks.

 

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