Humanitarian workers seek access to Libya

Libyan authorities are being urged by the head of United Nations humanitarian operations, Valerie Amos, to allow relief workers to get into Libya to help people fleeing violence.

Valerie Amos in Tunisia

Speaking on Sunday after a visit to the Tunisia/Libya border area to see first hand how the people fleeing violence in Libya are being assisted, she said her “biggest worry is what’s happening inside Libya itself.”

She said she was struck by the generosity of the Tunisian people and government who have led the efforts which are now supported by the international community to help foreign migrants fleeing Libya.

Ms. Amos pointed out that over the last few days 80,000 Egyptians have returned to their country and 14,000 Bangladeshis will be transported back home starting on Tuesday.

“That does to mean there isn’t still a huge amount to do. My biggest worry is what is happening inside Libya itself. We have not been able to get in over this western border. We have heard rumours that people are being held in a camp about 17 kilometres from this border with Tunisia, that they are being prevented from leaving. We need to get in to see what the situation is like on the ground, to really have a feel for what the humanitarian needs are.”

Ms. Amos added that there are approximately 1,000 people from other parts of the world, particularly from sub-Saharan Africa who need to be helped to get back to their countries.

Filed under Today's News.
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