I have been in touch with refugees in Libya who are in different locations in Libya. Some are in the so called legal or illegal detention/prison. Some of them are staying at a smugglers connection houses, and some of them are being held hostages by smugglers and others being held hostages by militias at an illegal detention.
Most of the calls from the legal detention centres that I receive on a daily basis is, to complain about their living conditions or not being registered by UNHCR.
The ones who are at the so called ‘illegal’ detention centres are being held at a prison like place that is run by militias. The militias who arrested them 8 weeks ago near Sebratha are now demanding that they get paid $3600 from each to take them to the legal detention.
The refugees staying at a smugglers connection houses have all paid for the sea trip are also being asked to pay $3600 each to be released and taken to the legal detention centres. Many of their families are now paying smugglers just to take them to the legal detention.
Those who are being held hostages by the smugglers are often tortured, starved, raped & are being asked to pay ransom of $5500 each to be taken to the legal detention. Most of them have paid ransom 4 or 5 times and no one has been released yet. Families don’t know what to do.
Date: 10 December 2017