giovedì 6 settembre 2012

Journey into the hell of refugees in Libyan prisons: dossier Habeshia

Emilio Drudi

In Libyan prisons migrants, refugees and asylum seekers continue to die. Harassment, abuse, rapes, ferocious repression of any attempt to protest. Kills even when cold. Was revealed in a dossier agency assistance Habeshia. The indifference of the international community. Of Europe and Italy in particular. For Italy, which has renewed and kept alive with the revolutionary government, the agreements reached in the past by Berlusconi and Gaddafi dictator. The "friendship treaty" was signed by Prime Minister General Mario Monti on January 20 last year, with the understanding to develop specific chapters for some special problems, such as the control of migration. Ignored all appeals, such as the historian Angelo Del Boca and various humanitarian organizations, to make this newfound "friendship" and cooperation to guarantee respect for human rights in the country.
No change of course even after that, on February 23, the European Court of Justice condemned Italy for the policy of indiscriminate expulsions at sea against migrants, commissioned by the Northern League minister Roberto Maroni with the Berlusconi government. Indeed, on April 3, the new interior minister Anna Maria Cancellieri, has signed a new agreement on immigration that was initially semi-secret, proved to be almost a copy of the "League" of rejections and the subsequent delivery of refugees to Libyan prisons. The Parliament has not discussed and the press did not mention it, although in the meantime, on March 29, she got a second conviction for Italy, this time by the Council of Europe, for the death of 63 asylum seekers abandoned adrift on a raft in the Strait of Sicily. To discover the content was Amnesty International, July 12 launched a campaign to request the waiver. A few days earlier, on June 29, there had emerged concretely the effects of this renewed agreement, with the lock at sea by Italian and Libyan naval vessels, a boat carrying 76 asylum seekers from Eritrea and Somalia, then handed over to the police border and transferred to the detention center Sibrata Mentega Delila, in the suburbs of Tripoli. Each other, including two pregnant women and children less than a year.
On 4 July, the newspaper La Repubblica, a dozen testimonies collected in the field, real "voices from hell" told what are the living conditions of the refugees in the camps in Libya. Sibrata Mentega Delila is no exception. The dossier Habeshia now confirms and extends those "voices from hell", describing the plight of hundreds of refugees enslaved, tortured, killed. And what's more, at risk of deportation: the Libyan authorities want to return them to the countries from which they fled to escape persecution and war, even though it is well known that in many cases - for the Eritreans, for example - back after attempting to travel abroad clandestine means being sentenced to long years in prison or even death, especially when it comes to military or young people of military age, however.
The case considers three detention centers in Homs, Tuewsha and Benghazi. The situation is almost identical in all three prisons: a hell of deprivation and abuse, continuing violence, denial of rights. "You have imprisoned young people, women and children 'guilty' only to have fled in search of freedom and a better life, is a huge abuse - don Mussie Zerai complaint, President of Habeshia - But even you do not even respect their human dignity are not held, they are slaves in the hands of torturers who have it how they want. " The incidents reported by prison prison speak for themselves.
Homs. About 200 detainees. "In these days - reveals Habeshia - the Libyan soldiers are forcing the refugees to be registered with the embassies of the countries of origin. It 's the prelude to expulsion: the return to the state that persecuted them to the point of forcing them to flee. This is a very serious, in which refugees are forced to fury of violence and conflict with each international humanitarian law. Libya is openly violating, in particular, the African Union Convention that protects the rights of refugees and asylum seekers. Between 150 and 200 men and women raped every day see their human dignity. Suffer discrimination on religious grounds, and especially men are beaten continuously. Women who are ill or pregnant, in need of medical checks, denied any kind of assistance. Any hint of protest is punished. In recent weeks, four young men were killed: three Eritreans and a Somali. An Eritrean boy was struck cold with a knife by the military while he slept, perhaps to 'punishment'. This series of abuses against women, which is also prevented by washing, staged a hunger strike. The protest was repressed wildly. The military if they are taken with a guy as a scapegoat first have stepped barrel and then shot him without any reason. Seeing that horrible scene, many women began to scream and the military, to reduce them to silence, they beat them and fired several shots fired. "
Tuewsha. More than 600 refugees. "It 's one of the most crowded detention centers - detects Habeshia - There are detained 550 men (500 Somalis and Eritreans fifty) and sixty women: 50 Somali and Eritrean ten. Three of the young Eritrean are pregnant: one has already passed the eighth month. Everyone, including pregnant women, suffer from lack of food and water. Water for personal hygiene but even that drinking water, to be able to at least quench. Many have been there for more than six months, six months of continuous abuse. Who tried to escape and was taken, suffered heavy beatings by the military guard: one lost an eye to the beatings, others complain permanent physical disability. "
Benghazi. Four hundred prisoners. "This center - reads the file - it is theoretically managed by the 'Red Crescent', but in fact command the armed militia of the revolution, which come when they want and have the prisoners to their liking. Several women were raped and at least 140 men were taken away to work as slaves. Even the younger kids under age, do not escape the beatings and torture. According to witnesses, on the contrary, the militia would have invented a game using just horrible these kids: a sort of shooting with human targets. Would avoid hit but even so, if true, is a form of torture awful. For pure sadistic fun. "
In the face of all this, don Mussie Zerai launches yet another appeal to the international community. To the European Union to intervene in the Libyan government. All'Italia it gives a voice, meanwhile suspending the effectiveness of the treaties signed soon. Agencies of the United Nations to all refugees detainees to be freed as soon as possible and transferred to centers run by the UN High Commission for Refugees. "On the one Libya 'democratic' - Don Zerai protest - we expected greater respect for human rights and a serious fight against racism against Africans: a tough fight against all forms of discrimination based on religion, ethnic, racial. It is not in any way understand this rage against the refugees. It seems absurd, the deafening silence of the international community. "

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