More African migrants flee Libya: IOM

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More central and western African migrants are managing to flee Libya, the International Organisation for Migration said on Thursday, following fears of targeting by Moamer Kadhafi's regime.

"Although the numbers of Africans fleeing to the borders still remain comparatively small, they are mounting," Mohamed Abdiker, IOM's Director of Operations, said in a statement.

"This is an encouraging sign given our strong concerns over the targeting of sub-Saharan Africans inside Libya," he added.

About one third of a group of 1,052 migrants being evacuated on Thursday by the IOM came from Benin, Cameroon, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo. Around 790 were Bangladeshi.

A day earlier the 1,713 evacuees included 295 Ghanaians and Sudanese.

More than 20,000 migrants of all nationalities are still stranded in Tunisia and Egypt, with an average of 6,000 still arriving at the two borders alone every day, according to the IOM.

In the past three weeks, more than 252,000 people have reached neighbouring Tunisia, Egypt, Niger and Algeria.

The sub-Saharan Africans were largely being repatriated through Egypt, Malta, Tunisia using commercial or charter flights.

The IOM feared that many migrant workers, especially poorer Africans or Asians had trouble fleeing, while sub-Saharan Africans also faced animosity in Libya after some were reportedly recruited as mercenaries by Kadhafi's forces.

© 2011 AFP

1 Comment To This Article

  • Harry Potter posted:

    on 19th May 2011, 10:09:06 - Reply

    It seems the rebels want access to the billions stored in US accounts.

    You want the billions that are already in my account? Are you serious?? The only reason I am supporting you is that you can fetch me your oil fields and make me more money. Wake up, it is not going to happen. Go back there on the ground ... kill your own people and fetch me as many oil fields you can. Then we will figure out how to use that oil.

    Read something similar here:

    2 million people requiring humanitarian aid? Within 3 months?? Imagine what the people of Iraq went through ... 5 years of war. They just keep the world in the dark about the hundreds of thousands of people killed there and about the trauma and nightmare that the Iraqi people had to go through. What was their fault ... what wrong had they done?