News comment by UNHCR's Chief of Mission for Libya, Jean-Paul Cavalieri, about shelling close to Gathering and Departure Facility in Tripoli

Libya. Refugees freed from detention are evacuated from Tripoli conflict zone

Refugees say goodbye to friends at the Gathering and Departure Facility in Tripoli, before their evacuation to Niger, April 2019.  © UNHCR/Mohamed Alalem

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is deeply concerned for the safety of refugees and asylum seekers at the Gathering and Departure Facility (GDF) in Tripoli, Libya, following news that three mortars fell close to the site earlier today. Fortunately, there were no casualties.

The site falls under the jurisdiction of the Libyan Ministry of Interior. UNHCR and its partner, LibAid, have been allowed to operate services at the GDF by the Libyan authorities since it opened in December 2018.

The GDF was established to host refugees who had been identified for a solution outside of Libya, pending their evacuation. With close to 1,000 people staying at the site including groups of around 900 individuals who entered spontaneously since July, it is severely overcrowded and is no longer functioning as a transit centre.

UNHCR urges all sides to the conflict in Libya to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure.

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