Political Affairs

UNSMIL expresses concern over the humanitarian situation in Tripoli and Tarhouna

Libyan Cloud News Agency – Tunisia

The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said that it is extremely concerned about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Tripoli and its surroundings as a result of the intensification of fighting in the past few days.

In  a statement on Monday, April 20, UNSMIL stated that at least 28 civilians were injured and five killed, including women and children, due to the dramatic increase of indiscriminate shelling on civilian-populated areas, including Ain Zara, Al-Swani, Tareeq al Shook, Souq Al-Juma,, Al-Krimya, Al-Furnaj and Arada.

“These attacks also resulted in renewed displacement and damage to civilian properties and infrastructure.  On 17 April, the Royal Hospital in Tripoli was also hit, resulting in extensive damage to the intensive care unit and the evacuation of staff and patients,” read the statement.
UNSMIL also expressed concern over the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Tarhouna, due to the military escalation in and around the city, resulting in the fresh displacement of civilians.

It pointed out that the dire humanitarian situation is further exacerbated by the continued electricity cuts, in what is an apparent collective punishment of the people of the city, in retaliation against cutting off the gas supply to the Khoms and Misrata power station.

The mission called on all parties involved to immediately end the electricity cut and restore the flow of gas immediately.

“UNSMIL is also concerned about the reported arbitrary arrests of civilians and mistreatment of both civilians and fighters in Tarhouna,” the statement indicated.
UNSMIL reminded all parties to the conflict that indiscriminate attacks, as well as the targeting of hospitals and other medical facilities, and intentionally cutting off electricity, fuel, water or food supplies are violations of international humanitarian law and could, depending on the circumstances, amount to war crimes.

UNSMIL renewed its call for a humanitarian truce to allow Libyans prepare for the holy month of Ramadan in peace and the authorities to provide the urgently needed services, treat the wounded and address the mounting threat of COVID-19.

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