Last Updated: Thursday, 18 December 2014, 14:40 GMT

Libya: Displacement increases in conflict areas

Publisher Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC)
Publication Date 7 October 2011
Cite as Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC), Libya: Displacement increases in conflict areas, 7 October 2011, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4e92dec22.html [accessed 19 December 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

The number of people internally displaced by the recent fighting in north-west Libya has increased steadily. By 28 September it had reportedly reached 70,000, with many IDPs seeking shelter with host families but others forced to stay out in the open in desperate conditions. By 2 October, the ongoing deterioration of the situation in Sirte had led about 10,000 people to leave the city, in vehicles packed with their belongings. At least a third of those displaced are reportedly staying in desert areas within a few kilometres of Sirte.

Meanwhile, 50,000 IDPs from tribes known to be loyal to Qadhafi, such as the Tawergha, Qawalish and Mesheshiya, have continued to face discriminatory treatment. Local authorities in Misrata have reportedly restricted the provision of humanitarian assistance to certain groups of IDPs; they have also been subjected to arbitrary arrests, mistreated and denied the chance to return.

In many other conflict-affected parts of Libya the situation has gradually returned to normal, and humanitarian responses have given way to longer-term recovery planning. In eastern Libya, local authorities estimated in late September that the number of IDPs had fallen to around 24,000 from a July total of around 220,000, with most of those still displaced originating from the towns of Brega, Bishr, Al-Alaghia and areas further west such as Ras Lanuf.

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