The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) mission in Libya has confirmed the release of all asylum seekers held at the Zintan shelter, explaining that most of those released had been held for more than two years, in extremely dire conditions.
In a statement Tuesday, the UNHCR clarified that it had helped over the past few days to bring those released to Tripoli in cooperation with the Department Of Combating Illegal Immigration of the Ministry of Interior.
The released were provided with relief items, food packages, hygiene kits, and medical checks, the UNHCR said.
It further emphasized that those migrants will also receive one-time financial aid to help them pay the rent and cover food needs, explaining that it is working with its partners to determine temporary accommodations for those released until they can arrange their residence.
The UN organization reiterated that it has long advocated for the release of all refugees and asylum seekers and an end to arbitrary detention in Libya, especially with the rising number of Covid-19 cases in the country.
It indicated that its teams had not been able to reach the Zintan shelter since February until last October for security reasons while expressing appreciation to the Libyan authorities for facilitating the release process.
However, it did express concern over nearly a thousand immigrants and asylum seekers that are still in detention; 190 of them fall within the competence of the UNHCR.