Libya Remains Top Priority for UN Migration Agency

Head of the International Organization for Migration William Lacy Swing, who visited Libya this week, said this North African country remains a top priority for the UN agency.

Swing, who is accompanied by Vincent Houver, IOM deputy director for Emergencies, Othman Belbeisi, IOM Chief of Mission in Libya and other IOM Libya staff, met with the Prime Minister Fayez al Serraj.
The IOM delegation also met with several Government ministers, as well as representatives of the Libyan Coast Guard and the Directorate for Combatting Illegal Migration (DCIM).

“Libya remains IOM’s top priority and it is therefore important for me to be back in Tripoli so soon after my last visit at the end of March,” said Director General Swing. “The response from the Libyan authorities has been more than positive and IOM is fully committed to further support and collaborate closely with our Libyan counterparts.”

“This visit contributed to strengthening the way IOM plans and works together with governmental counterparts to ensure the delivery of tangible results in support of the Government’s strategic priorities,” Belbeisi said following the visit.

While IOM’s delocalized structure is built on a strong field presence with IOM staff all across east, south and west of Libya, an increasing number of international staff is anticipated to be back in Libya as soon as possible.

Throughout the Tripoli mission, IOM pleaded for the improvement of living conditions in the detention centers and alternatives to detention including open centers and safe spaces for women, children and other vulnerable migrants, registration of migrants following rescue-at-sea operations and the continuous technical cooperation to support local partners and Libyan officials.

Director General Swing also met with deputy special representative and deputy Head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL). Talks focused on IOM’s scaling up its collaboration with the UNSMIL.

 

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