By Sami Zaptia.
London, 18 October 2017:
Under the auspices of the GNA Ministry of Local Government and in partnership with the Libyan Expert Forum for Development Cooperation (LEF), a Libyan NGO which includes the UNDP as a member, a workshop on illegal migration, entitled “Illegal migration: Between the pressure of arrivals and human traffickers and programmes of the West to solve the problem on Libyan soil’’ was held in Tripoli on Tuesday.
The session was opened by Abdulbari Shinbaro, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Local Government for Technical Affairs, who stressed the importance of this pivotal topic at this time.
Libya was going through negative repercussions with regards to security, and with regards to social and living standards affecting Libyan citizens and the effects on the Libyan state as a whole, Shinbaro explained .
After brief introductions, the discussion session was presided over by LEF chairman and Libya’s national expert on social affairs, Professor Mustafa al-Attir. The various angles and repercussions of the issue of illegal migration were discussed. Notably, that Libya was neither the cause nor the source of the problem with the overwhelming illegal migrants originating from sub-Saharan states.
Some noted that the EU needed to be more proactive in the countries of origin of illegal migration solving the root cause of the problem rather than the symptoms. It was noted that many African illegal migrants had to cross numerous African borders before finally reaching Libya – with the EU failing to take action or pressure those states into stemming the northward flow. Libya should not end up paying the price for illegal mass migration it was noted.
The meeting was attended by the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Social Affairs, officials from the Ministries of the Interior and Defense as well as other security agencies such as the Border Guards, Coastguard, and a number of academics, experts and interested people.