Traffickers kill 12 migrants trying to flee Libya camp: UN

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Geneva :More than 12 migrants were shot dead by human traffickers last week while trying to escape a camp in Libya, where some were subjected to “torture abuse”, the United Nations said Friday. The incident, previously reported by Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and local sources, occurred on May 23 in the town of Bani Walid, 170 kilometres (110 miles) southeast of Tripoli. “Human traffickers in Libya reportedly killed more than a dozen people and wounded many others after a group of some 200 Eritreans, Ethiopians and Somalis, being held captive, attempted to escape,” the UN refugee agency said in a statement, adding that those killed “were shot”. “The survivors spoke of torture abuse and exploitation at the hands of traffickers – some being held in captivity for up to three years,” the statement added. A local organisations called the Commission of Civil Society, which helps care for migrants in Bani Walid, has however denied reports that anyone was killed during the escape. But in a May 27 statement, the group condemned “the inhuman treatment” of migrants. Bani Walid is a transit point for migrants aiming to reach Europe by boat from the coast further north. People traffickers and kidnappers run around 20 detention centres in the town, telephoning the migrants’ families to deliver ransom demands.

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