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04 October 2018

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A Brutal Life for Migrants in Libya: Trafficking, Detention or Death en route to Europe

(PBS) – African migrants fleeing to Europe risk slave traffickers, starvation and shipwreck. Now, a growing number of those who complete the arduous journey are being turned away, and the Libyan government is detaining thousands in migrant camps characterized by inhumane conditions.

Special correspondent Christopher Livesay and videographer Alessandro Pavone received rare access for this exclusive report.

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“You can have a future here, in Nigeria, in your home country – that’s what we want young people to know. Photo: Saskia Houttuin and Sarah Haaij/IRIN

In a Nigerian Migration Hub, a Local Group Swaps Work Skills for European Dreams

Benin City (IRIN) – Judith Giwa is not a migrant, but because she was unemployed and considered vulnerable to migration or trafficking she qualified for training with a local non-profit organisation working to help migrant returnees in Nigeria’s Benin City.

“I learned this in just three months,” she said, holding up an orange-and-blue wax print child’s dress that she made in a clothes-making course run by Idia Renaissance. “Isn’t it beautiful?”

Giwa, 31, said she has no intention of trying to migrate to Europe as so many other Nigerians have. During a recent “life skills” class, the discussion focused on the dangers of human smuggling.

“If I ever go to Europe, I’ll go by plane,” she said. “And I’ll only go when I’ve something to show for it – something I can contribute.”

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Favour: "I would not want anyone else to experience the things I witnessed in Libya, that is why I am proud to be a messenger."

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Global Migration Film Festival Countdown – 55 days
Learn more about the Festival on our GMFF website.


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  • IPS republished an IOM blog which marked the International Day of Non-violence by urging states to adopt and implement legislation prohibiting xenophobic acts.
     
  • VOA reported that a tree-planting project is under way in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, to undo the environmental damage caused by the influx of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees who fled persecution and violence in Myanmar.
     
  • Ghana News Agency reported that 80 per cent of Nigerian women entering Italy are trafficked for sexual exploitation, according to IOM figures.
     
  • Xinhua reported that 96 irregular migrants from Bangladesh and Pakistan returned voluntarily to their countries of origin with the support of Libyan authorities and IOM.
     
  • Nigeria’s Daily Times reported that IOM has renewed its commitment to the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) in the fight against human trafficking in Nigeria.
     
  • DPA reported that so far this year, over 604,000 Afghans have returned home from Iran and Pakistan
     
  • Jurist reported that several human rights groups have called upon European leaders to offer registration to the rescue ship Aquarius, after its registration was cancelled by Panama.


 

  • The BMJ Opinion published an op-ed on the importance of the words used to discuss migrants and migration, objecting to using the phrase ‘illegal migrant’ because actions, rather than people, can be illegal. IOM has also deemed the phrase unacceptable.