Human Rights Watch warns of Coronavirus spread in Libya's detentions
Human Rights Watch said Monday that Libya needs to be prepared to limit the spread of the Coronavirus in overcrowded detention facilities and shelters for displaced people, adding that Libya’s healthcare system, along with other public services, has been battered by intermittent armed conflicts and political divisions since 2011.
"One measure Libyan authorities should implement is reducing the number of people in detention by releasing people unjustly or arbitrarily detained. People held arbitrarily long-term without charge or trial and migrants and asylum seekers detained solely because of their immigration status should be released. They should also consider releasing children, low-level, and nonviolent offenders, and people who have served most of their term." Human Rights Watch said.
It said detainees, who are most at risk, such as older people, people with disabilities that put them at greater risk of infection, and people with pre-existing conditions should also be given alternatives to detention, adding that Libyan authorities should release children and wives of suspected ISIS fighters who are held in Misrata and Tripoli's Mitiga prisons and have not been accused of a crime.
Meanwhile, Libya's Public Prosecution ordered the release of 466 prisoners from Tripoli Rehabilitation Center as part of precautionary measures against the outbreak of Coronavirus, Ministry of Justice of the Government of National Accord said last Saturday.
The Justice Ministry added that the released persons included people under interrogation, and those who are eligible for parole, and those included in earlier release orders. The inmates included Arab and foreign nationals.