UNHCR Update Libya (15 March 2019) [EN/AR]

Key figures:

170,490 Libyans currently internally displaced (IDPs)

445,845 returned IDPs (returns registered in 2016 - 2018)

57,050 registered refugees and asylum-seekers in the State of Libya

336 overall persons arrived in Italy

245 monitoring visits to detention centres so far in 2019

527 asylum-seekers and refugees released from detention so far in 2019

3,303 vulnerable refugees and asylum-seekers evacuated since November 2017

Funding USD 88.1 M required for 2019

Population movements

As of 15 March, 855 persons have been rescued/intercepted at sea by the Libyan Coast Guard in 2019. During the week, two commercial vessels disembarked 77 refugees and migrants at the Tripoli Commercial Port. The number of disembarkations in 2019 drastically decreased when compared to data collected during the same period in 2018 (3,622 individuals) and 2017 (3,387 individuals). Recently, departures of boats took place from areas surrounding Tripoli, including near Azzawya and Al Khums. UNHCR and the International Medical Corps were present to assist those disembarked with core-relief items (CRIs) and medical support.

UNHCR Response UNHCR international staff are currently in Benghazi on an extensive mission to strengthen the humanitarian response in the city. The greater Benghazi area is hosting the largest number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Libya, with over 27,200 IDPs and 189,000 IDP returnees. The majority face difficulties accessing safe and dignified shelter, as well as medical care, education, and essential goods and services. Many are exposed to risks connected to explosive remnants of war in urban areas. In late January 2019, UNHCR international staff visited Benghazi�and in particular Gar Yousin IDP settlement�where 230 Taweghan families remain displaced. Since 2018, UNHCR's response in the eastern region focused on the provision of assistance to IDPs and returnees with the distribution of CRIs to 26,400 individuals and cash assistance to 4,000 individuals. In addition, in 2018 UNHCR implemented 17 quick-impact projects (QIPs) supporting 8,500 persons.

There are 57,050 persons currently registered with UNHCR in Libya, of whom 12,934 persons were registered in 2018 and 1,823 persons registered in 2019. The majority of those registered are Syrian (41%), followed by Sudanese (19%) and Eritrean (15%) nationals.

UNHCR continues to register persons of concern (POCs) in Libyan detention centres, with 4,177 persons recorded in the last six months.

Last week, UNHCR teams registered and verified the presence of 736 individuals in Abu Salim detention centre in Tripoli. This week, 147 individuals were registered in Qasr Bin Ghashir detention centre. A verification exercise was also conducted of POCs living in urban areas in Misrata.

UNHCR and its partners finalized the annual participatory needs assessment exercise. In recent weeks, eleven focus group discussions took place with refugees and asylum-seekers in UNHCR's Community Day Centres in Tripoli. POCs living in urban areas reported limited access to services, including health and education. General insecurity was also highlighted as a main concern. Based on the information gathered, UNHCR is currently developing its strategy for 2020.

Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees