Daily Trust

Govt says it holds U.N.-sanc­tioned al­leged peo­ple smug­gler

- Crime · Middle East News · Politics · United Nations · Libya · Government of National Accord · UN Security Council · Tripoli · NATO · Muammar al-Gaddafi · Az Zawiyah · Khalifa Haftar

Libya’s in­ter­na­tion­ally recog­nised Govern­ment of Na­tional Ac­cord (GNA) has de­tained Ab­dal­rah­man alMi­lad, a coast­guard com­man­der sanc­tioned by the United Nations for al­leged hu­man traf­fick­ing and mi­grant smug­gling, its in­te­rior min­istry said yes­ter­day.

The min­istry said it had de­tained Mi­lad at the re­quest of the U.N. Se­cu­rity Coun­cil and that it had re­ferred the case to the pub­lic pros­e­cu­tor to take le­gal mea­sures against him.

Mi­lad heads a coast­guard unit in Zawiya, just west of Tripoli, and was one of six peo­ple sanc­tioned by the U.N. for in­volve­ment in peo­ple traf­fick­ing or smug­gling in Libya two years ago. Mi­grants had tes­ti­fied that they had been taken to a de­ten­tion cen­tre on one of the ships used by Mi­lad and were then held in bru­tal con­di­tions and beaten. He de­nied any wrong­do­ing or in­volve­ment in smug­gling in a phone call to Reuters in 2018.

Smug­glers have been able to make vast prof­its by ex­ploit­ing a se­cu­rity vac­uum in Libya since the 2011 NATO-backed upris­ing that top­pled Muam­mar Gaddafi and left many state in­sti­tu­tions un­der the con­trol of armed groups.

Libya has been di­vided since 2014 between the GNA in Tripoli and the east­ern-based Libyan Na­tional Army (LNA) of Khal­ifa Haf­tar.

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