Published: July 08, 2019
A German government minister has called for an “international rescue mission” for migrants trapped in detention camps in Libya following an air strike which killed at least 53.
“The people in these wretched camps have the prospect of dying there from violence or hunger, trying to get home and dying of thirst in the desert, or drowning in the Mediterranean,” Gerd Müller, the German development minister, said.
“We need a joint humanitarian initiative by Europe and the United Nations to rescue migrants on Libyan soil,” he told Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung newspaper. “The new EU Commission must act immediately. We can not wait a day longer.”
At least 53 people were killed and 130 injured in an air strike on a migrant detention camp in the Libyan capital Tripoli last week. Most of the victims were believed to be sub-Saharan Africans trying to reach Europe.
The attack, condemned as a possible war crime by the UN, is widely thought to have been carried out by rebel forces led by Gen Khalifa Haftar, though the Libyan government has accused the United Arab Emirates of responsibility.
Mr Müller offered no details of what an international rescue mission would entail. He warned that climate change was exacerbating the migrant crisis and could lead to millions more Africans seeking to reach Europe. source