UN Independent Fact-Finding Mission on Libya calls for human rights reform
Libyan Cloud News Agency – Geneva
The UN Independent Fact-Finding Mission on Libya expressed deep concern over the country’s deteriorating human rights situation.
In a report, the mission concluded that there are grounds to believe a wide array of war crimes and crimes against humanity have been committed by State security forces and armed militia groups.
The investigation, which outlines a broad effort by authorities to repress dissent by civil society, documented numerous cases of arbitrary detention, murder, rape, enslavement, extrajudicial killing and enforced disappearance, and said that nearly all survivors interviewed had refrained from lodging official complaints out of fear of reprisals, arrest, extortion and a lack of confidence in the justice system.
The head of the mission Mohamed Auajjar said that there is an urgent need for accountability to end this pervasive impunity, calling on Libyan authorities to develop a human rights plan of action and a comprehensive, victim-centred roadmap on transitional justice without delay, and hold all those responsible for human rights violations accountable.
“The Libyan Government is obligated to investigate allegations of human rights violations and crimes in areas under its control in accordance with international standards.” He added.
The mission’s investigations found that Libyan authorities, notably the security sectors, are curtailing the rights to assembly, association, expression, and belief to ensure obedience, entrench self-serving values and norms, and punish criticism against authorities and their leadership.
“Attacks against inter alia human rights defenders, women rights activists, journalists, and civil society associations have created an atmosphere of fear that has sent persons into self-censorship, hiding or exile at a time that it is necessary to build an atmosphere that is conducive to free and fair elections for Libyans to exercise their right to self-determination and choose a representative government to run the country,” the report said.
The report said that trafficking, enslavement, forced labour, imprisonment, extortion and smuggling of vulnerable migrants generated significant revenue for individuals, groups and State institutions, and incentivized the continuation of violations.
The report also said women are systematically discriminated against in Libya and concluded that their situation has markedly deteriorated over the last three years.