Libya puts 142 migrants on plane back to Guinea

Libya put 142 illegal migrants on a flight back to Guinea on Wednesday with the help of the U.N. migration agency, officials said, as the North African country steps up deportations to ease severe overcrowding in its detention centres.

Europe hopes to stall migration at meeting with Africa

The number of people stuck in Libyan detention centres has risen dramatically this year after armed groups largely shut down the boat route to Italy from the smuggling hub of Sabratha.

The International Organization for Migration flew the Guinean migrants from two western cities to the city of Misrata, from where they boarded a plane for Conakry.

The deportations come in the wake of a CNN report on migrants being sold for slave labour that sparked an international outcry.

Migrant flows through Libya have surged since 2014. More than 600,000 people have crossed the central Mediterranean to Italy in the past three years, but departures from Libya’s coast dropped sharply in July when armed groups in Sabratha began preventing boats from leaving.

After clashes in the western city in September, thousands of migrants held near the coast emerged and were transferred to detention centres under the nominal control of the U.N.-backed government in Tripoli.

Amnesty International said this month that up to 20,000 people are being held in detention centres and are subject to “torture, forced labour, extortion, and unlawful killings”. Other human rights organisations have said similar things in recent months.

Reporting by Ayman Salhi and Mostafa Salem; Writing by Ulf Laessing; Editing by Hugh Lawson

Partner Content

Disruptive digital solutions is rewiring the DNA of Banking

By Kennedy Mubita, Africa Head, SC Ventures. Imagine a bank whose customers can tap on a wearable device to...

The future of banking; digitization and collaboration as growth accelerants

By Kariuki Ngari, CEO & Managing Director, Standard Chartered, Kenya & East Africa COVID-19 has upended the social and...

Star Quality Speaker Line-Up at Africa Tech Festival 2020

Acknowledged as the world’s largest Africa-focused digital infrastructure and emerging tech event, the Africa Tech Festival has always attracted a stellar line-up of critical thinkers, analysts, futurists, keynote and inspirational speakers. 2020 will more than deliver on that reputation, with a stimulating array of visionary industry presenters, raconteurs and even some sporting greats.

Newsletter

Sign up for free newsletters and get more CNBC AFRICA delivered to your inbox