Bangladesh seeks justice for 26 killed in Libya

5 in critical condition, Libya launches probe

Shahidul Islam Chowdury | Published: 23:55, May 29,2020


The Bangladesh government on Friday asked Libyan authorities to arrest people involved in the murder of 26 Bangladeshis and injuring 11 others and to ensure their punishment.

The Bangladesh embassy in Tripoli made the request in a diplomatic note to the foreign ministry of the internationally recognised Government of National Accord of Libya.

Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen said in a video massage that the bodies were kept in a mortuary in Mizda and the government was in touch with the International Organisation for Migration for bringing the corpse to home.

Five of 11 injured Bangladeshis are in critical condition, while six of them are out of danger, Bangladesh ambassador to Libya Sk Sekander Ali told New Age over phone on Friday.  

Three of the critically injured have undergone surgery, he said.

The Libyan authorities said that they ordered an investigation into the murder of 30 ‘illegal immigrants’, including 26 Bangladesh citizens, and a Libyan trafficker, according to The Libya Observer.

The Libyan interior ministry said that the relatives of a slain Libyan national took the law in their own hands and committed ‘vendetta crimes’ by murdering 26 people from Bangladesh and four from African countries, in addition to injuring 11 others. 

The Libyan national in Mizda town, accused of human trafficking, was killed by ‘illegal immigrants’ while he was smuggling them to coastal cities, it said.

The interior ministry instructed the Mizda security department to take the necessary legal action to arrest the perpetrators and bring them to justice, saying whatever the motive behind the mass murder crime was the law did not permit people to take the matters in their own hands.

A group of Libyan militias spread bullets on a group of at least 42 people, including 38 Bangladesh citizens, who were taken hostage for trafficking, as revenge as a Libyan was allegedly killed in a brawl between the trafficking victims and the traffickers on Thursday. The incident took place in Mizda, about 180 kilometres from Libyan capital Tripoli.

An injured Bangladesh national informed the Bangladesh embassy over phone that the traffickers were taking a group of Bangladeshi and African people to Tripoli from Benghazi, through a desert, 15 days ago. A militia group took them hostage for ransom in Mizda. They were often severely tortured for paying $7,000 each.

One of the main traffickers was killed by an African trafficking victim during a brawl as trafficking victims got united and developed resistance against the torture one day, according to the embassy.

Relatives of the dead trafficker and members of the militia group opened gun on the trafficking victims killing 30 people, he informed the embassy.

One of injured, Sohagh Ahmed, 24, of Moutupi village of Bhairab upazila in Kishoreganj, migrated to Libya over one year ago by paying Tk 5.5 lakh to a local broker, his uncle Mohammad Rajon told New Age.

Sohagh used to work in a shop in Libya. He often sent money back home.

About two weeks ago, Sohagh was caught by a Libyan broker who offered him better job and took to a new place, he said.

On the way, the Libyan brokers demanded Tk 10 lakh for sending him to better workplace, Rajon said, adding that before making proper communication, Sohagh was attacked and injured by them.

Rajon said that Bangladesh embassy officials informed him that Sohagh has been under treatment in Libya in critical condition.

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