The Chronicle

Libya a cesspool of horror, says UN


War crimes and crimes against humanity, including the use of child soldiers, have been committed in Libya since 2016, a UN investigat­ion has revealed.

The Independen­t Fact-Finding Mission on Libya, establishe­d by the UN Human Rights Council, said Europe-bound migrants face abuse in detention centres and at the hands of trafficker­s, while detainees languishin­g in horrific jail conditions are tortured.

“There are reasonable grounds to believe war crimes have been committed in Libya, while violence perpetrate­d in prisons and against migrants may amount to crimes against humanity,” the mission said in a statement.

The report documents the recruitmen­t and direct participat­ion of children as soldiers, plus the enforced disappeara­nce and murder of prominent women.

It establishe­s that from late 2019, Turkey facilitate­d the recruitmen­t of Syrian child mercenarie­s aged 15 to 18 to fight alongside the Government of National Accord’s forces.

The unrest in the north African country has had a dramatic impact on Libyans’ economic, social and cultural rights.

“All parties to the conflicts, including third states, foreign fighters and mercenarie­s, have violated internatio­nal humanitari­an law … and some have also committed war crimes,” said Mohamed Auajjar, who chaired the mission.

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