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LIBYA: At Least Four Somali refugees Are Killed And Many Forced Out To The Desert

CAIRO — In areas where forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi has been forced out, many angry mobs are targeting black Africans after reports that the government was using “African mercenaries” to repress the revolt was transmitted by Western media.

For long, Libya has been a gateway for young Africans seeking a better life in Europe and many of them have been stranded in the North African nation. Refugee and migrant workers from Somalia, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Senegal, Chad, Nigeria and other sub-Sahara countries have came under attack according to human right groups.

United Nation refugee advocate agencies believe there are more than 8,000 registered refugees in Libya and a further 3,000 asylum-seekers with cases still pending.

The UN refugee agency said in Geneva on Tuesday it has become “increasingly concerned” about the dangers for civilians inadvertently caught up in the mounting violence in Libya, especially asylum-seekers and refugees with African origins.

Unconfirmed reports of Libyan government hiring “black African mercenaries” in Tripoli and Benghazi has fueled the anger.

Somali refugees

The Libyan public has accused the government of unprecedented use of armed forces and foreign “killers” against its own citizens. Due to absence of independent reporters and international observers make it difficult to verify these claims but according to Human Rights Watch more than 300 people are killed.

Melissa Fleming, UNHCR’s chief spokesperson, told reporters in Geneva that they have no direct contacts with refugees in Libya but they were monitoring the situation through third-party sources.

“We have no access at this time to the refugee community. Over the past months we have been trying to regularize our presence in Libya, and this has constrained our work,” Ms. Fleming said.

She confirmed that Libyan protesters were now targeting black refugees. “One journalist passed information to us from Somalis in Tripoli who said they were being hunted on suspicion of being mercenaries,” she said. “He says they feel trapped and frightened to go out, even though there is little or no food at home.”

The UN refugee agency Ms. Fleming urged neighboring countries, including those in Europe to keep their borders open as it braced itself for a flow of refugees fleeing the conflict and angry mobs.

“We are referring to all countries: we’re saying please no push backs at this stage, this is a time to show your humanitarian spirit and generosity towards people who are going through some severe trauma,” she pleaded.

In August 2010, the crumbling regime of Muammar Qaddafi issued a decree ordering all Somali refugees to leave the country or face prison.

According to independent reports reaching Somalilandpress from Egypt at least four Somali refugees were slayed in Libya. The independent source added many Libyan prisons are over crowded with black African refugees and they fear a modern day genocide could unfold without the eyes of the international community.

Many Libyans also accuse the Somali refugees of occupying government funded apartments. Now there is mad land and property grabbing campaign going on in Libya. They are ousting refugees out only to occupy the property. Prior to this revolt many were expelled and forced to live in the Libyan desert without water or shelter. Many refugees from sub-Sahara Africa are been enforced on some of the ugliest of form of human practices by mobs and gangs.

Somalilandpress is working hard to get in touch with Somalis refugees inside Libya. Somali asylum seekers in Libya have always faced difficult circumstance and poor reception from locals.

Somalilandpress | 23 Feb 2011

– end

Somalilandpress received the following statement appealing to all concerned groups from Dr. Yusuf Dirir Ali.

Hundreds of Somali refugees are stranded in Libya. There are reports coming from Libya stating that at least 4 Somali refugees were killed and many others wounded. The Libyan public is said to be confusing the Somali refugees with the Qaddafi’s mercenaries. Therefore, the Somali refugees are being attacked without rhyme or reason by rightfully fuming Libyan Mobs.

I have written emails to the CNN and both Aljazeera Arabic & English, highlighting the calamitous risks faced by the Somali refugees in Libya. I encourage all Somalis to do the same and to contact their legislators & administrations in EU, USA, Canada, Australia and as many news outlets as possible. Write and call the CNN and Aljazeera and specially Aljazeera Arabic million times.

PLEASE DO SOMETHING TO SAFE THE LIVES OF OUR FOLLOW BROTHERS AND SISTERS who are stranded helplessly in Libya. Why not contact the good office of the Amir of Qatar, he is currently the most respected and influential Arab leader.

Dr. Yusuf Dirir Ali, MD

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  • Ali Dheere

    I feel for our brothers who are caught in this situation. Libyan people and the dictator Gaddafi was never kind to refugees. Gaddafi says he is African but he is the worst racist the continent has seen. Now he is going the same way dictator Siyad Barre did by turning his fighter planes on his people.

    Somaliland government should access the refugees in Libya and help the Somali and Somalilanders who are caught in this situation.

    • hodo

      when you said Somalilanders it is you are talking about people of another countinent.

      • rrrr

        that is a good question!!!

  • rebeccaomonira

    Please keep posting information.Unfortunately western journalists have taken on mercenaries narrative with little interest in the safety of blacks in Libya. If this continues we'll never know what happens to these people. Do you have contacts for any black Africans with family in Libya?
    Thanks.
    Rebecca

    • xamse_aj

      The situation is very dire at the moment for Sub Saharan Africans and refugees in particular from Somalia/Somaliland. I'm currently having difficulties tracking down a relative there who has been working their for a couple of years now. Western journalists need to be more sensitive when referring to mercenaries, who are not all African, as this will lead to further resentment against those poor refugees and migrant workers.

    • Moh

      we got some numbers, but there is no respond so far.

    • hodo

      It is so sad as a Somalian we don't have a goverment of law to protect us. We spend the so long fighting with each other we lost what matters.

    • Mohamed

      Helo,

      am somali refugee living in libya and you may not bleave the situation we are in. Can any body in the world save our lives killing and crack down on us continues particularly tripoli. Can any body save us

  • Nas

    Is it not time for us Somalis to wake up and realise the mess we are facing….? We are hatred and despised across the world…Is it not time for us Somalis, to stop fighting and lay-down our arms and put to an end to this pointless 20 year long conflict…?

  • boqoljireh

    Tell that your Wanlaweyn. We Somalilanders have nothing to do with this hate and mess you are talking about.

    Use your brain and make peace with yourself – Wanlaweyn.

    • hodo

      You are such a strange person with a hate in his heart. This is not the time for that. Somali, Somali and that is all matters.

  • Ayanle

    I fill sorry for my peopel i wish we could take care of them in somaliland may allah take care of them but i belive one day we will take care of them in somaliland if allah wishes so.

  • mohamed

    The UNHCR/IC have to act fast to help the stranded refugees in Libya. There are good media reporters
    in Libya and they could also add their reports on this refugees issues. Brutal Gaddafi is another stubborn
    Saddam who's destroying his own people and destroying himself like Saddam. This beastly dictator
    must be taken down before it;s too late and spare the Libyaian people to fend for themselves better
    democratic institutions within the family nations of the bigger world order.
    Cheers.

  • vincent Harris

    I immediately got very worried when the mercenary stories started floating in the press and online. I will this very grave situation on my blog Colored Opinions today or tomorrow.

  • Adan Farah

    First thank you SL press for this . Sadly the situation is near civil war in Libya as Gaddafi and his regime is about the fall. Please I urge the Goverment of Somaliland and President Silaanyo and The foreign minster Omaar to immidately do something for the Somalilander and Somali community in Lybya . Please for the sake of this innocence people life. Also as you have seen the Gaddafi regmie has taken african and East european mercenaries as killing machine this will diffidently make the siuation of the somalilander community very hard. I Urge the Somaliland goverment a goverment voted in to take care of its people to act now.If we dont have a embassy in Libya the goverment should conntact our neighbour of Djibout etc so we know that our people are safe.
    This siuation is getting very ugly Let us all pray that this wicked regmie does not kill all the people their .

    Somalilland Press> Wallayaal ummad somalilyeed ee shooga Lybya ha la caaweyo waayo meeshaa waa meel dagaal iyo dhiib ha socood doo. Waa inaad laheed daan SL Dowlada Hargeisa joogta . Waa isaad iyo Waar Khyar aah.

    Please if you start any fund raising for SL community let us know because Gaddafi Regime is making that country melted into hell.

  • rosebell

    There has been a incidents before of xenophobia and the reports of "African mercenaries" whoever invented this to the media are worsening the situation. Remember in 2000 the deaths that were registered. I do hope they can be safe!

  • Jale

    Arabs have some unknown animosity towards Africans even though we welcomed them to our land and continent. The Western media ignorantly and on purpose aired the "mercenaries" reports to get Libyans to target Africans but remember it was the Western forces that bombed Libya several times and forced them to accept the hoax "lockerbie bombing". Furthermore how many years they kept them on sanction?

    This was designed to divert attention from Western hate to Africans. But Africa will provail soon, everyone took advantage of us but we will say enough and restore dignity.

    Arabs should be deported. Africa for Africans.

    • mustapha

      I agree. I am moselem from drc. I have seen how these libyans behave to ward black moslems, it totally unexpetable

  • jhn

    yes jale arabs should back to the middle east as africa is africans long live africa

    • Ayanle

      yes long live africa and we all should pray that gud take care of africans.

  • Ayanle

    one love africa
    africa is for africans.

    • Ismail

      FYI: the origin of the name 'Africa' actually originates from Libya (quite ironically). I don't care where you are from, there is no duh thing as a pure race so please stop posting nonsense. I am Moroccan Muslim and I know I am a mix of many things through my ancestry (Yemeni, Berber, and whatever else God knows), just like the majority of north and east Africans. I am extremely proud to be African and Arab, and you should all be proud of whatever you are especially if you are Muslim because if the Arabs didn't migrate to Africa then neither of us would be Muslim. It is very sad and disturbing what is happening across the world to those who are opressed but that is not a reason to feed hate. Pray for our brothers and sisters from everywhere. InshAllah Africa shall prosper.

  • BRO. PIANKHI

    A CALL TO AFRAKA! WANT NO LAND BUT AFRAKA! ITS HAS BEEN TO DAMN LONG! THE SITUATION IN THE SNAKES CAN BECOME THIS VERY SCENE- BROTHERS LOCKED UP IN THESE PRISON SYSTEMS AS WELL. THEN WE WILL WONDER Y NO ONE IS HELPING US. WE MUST USE THIS "…TELECOMMUNICATIONS" & SPREAD THE MESSAGE… THIS CAN BE A JUMP OFF. EVERYONE WANT TO CRY FOR THE SO-CALLED JEW BUT HERE WE FACE ANOTHER HOLOCAUST – THAT'S ALREADY IN THE BEGINNING STAGES!!!!! WAKE UP MY PEOPLE! WE WILL BE NEXT AND THE MASSES WONT EVEN KNOW WHAT HIT THEM!!!!! USE YOUR COMPUTER, TEXT, BROWSING, POSTING SKILLS SINCE WE CANT TALK TRUTH TO THE EARTH WITHOUT BEING DEBATED. BRING AWARENESSES TO AS MANY PPL AS YOU CAN WITH THIS ARTICLE, YOU CAN'T POSSIBLY READ THIS AND CONTINUE THIS ILLUSIONAL PARADE! WAKE UP BEFORE THIS HOLOCAUST OF BEAUTIFUL, CIVILIZED, INNOCENT, COLONIALIZED LAND AND AFRAKAN PEOPLE IS REALLY DESTROYED. GETS TO COPY AND PASTING SINCE THAT'S YOUR THANG!!!!!!!!!!! FREE THE LAND, FREE THE PEOPLE! AFRAKA FOR THE AFRAKANS!!!!!

  • fadouma

    It hurts me to read those kind of news. No one should be indifferent to this situation faced by all refugees whereever they come from. Not only Somalis should get help and apparently only Black people in Libya are targeted.

    Somaliland goverment must demostrate some concerns over this sad and heartbraking news about our brothers and sisters.

    May Allah give us peace all.

  • Mohahero

    Somalis ,somalilanders all the same should be saved from mad arabs of libya .

  • Nura

    My dad's best friend works for the present somaliland governement he is a minister im in the process of contacting him so he could speak to the president about this insha'allah. I mean the least they can do is sent daalo over to collect them or something like the nigeriens did.

  • Naima

    my cousin is one of the 35 somalilander students studying at a university in a small town near tripoli. the students are in grave danger & since the proptests and fights have broken out the scholarship funders are no longer supplying him or any of the other students with any money. We are also not able to send him any money due to all exports being halted. The students cannot be contacted via internet/phone by anyone outside the country. They are living on minimual basics and are struggling to make ends meet.

    my cousin's family has been putting a lot of pressure on those in government in hargeisa and they have asked djibouti to dispatch these somalilanders to djibouti to which an agreement was made to carry this out. yesterday djibouti picked up its citizens and has not returned to pick up the somalilanders who are still stranded there.

    we must raise our concern and act quick, we need to put pressure on our official leaders and get them to recognise the severity of this problem.

    Nura, let me know how you progress in contacting the minister!

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