Thousands of detainees and people without medical care after days of arrests in Libya

Over the past two days, MSF teams have managed to visit two detention centers in the capital where people arrested in recent raids are held: Shara Zawiya and Al-Mabani (also known as Ghout Sha’al).

In Shara Zawiya detention center, which normally accommodates between 200 and 250 people, an MSF team saw more than 550 women and children crammed into the cells, including pregnant women and newborn babies. About 120 people shared a single toilet, while buckets filled with urine were lined up near cell doors. During the distribution of food, a commotion erupted as the female detainees protested against the conditions in which they were being held.

At Al-Mabani detention center, our teams saw hangars and cells so overcrowded that the men inside were forced to stand. Outside the cells, hundreds of women and children were held in the open, without shade or shelter. An MSF team spoke to men who said they had not eaten for three days, while several women said they were only given a piece of bread and a triangle of melted cheese. once a day. Our team found several men in an unconscious state in need of urgent medical attention.

During their visit to Al-Mabani, our team saw a group of detained migrants and refugees attempting to escape. They were greeted with extreme violence: our team heard two heavy gunshots from a very short distance and witnessed the indiscriminate beating of a group of men, who were then forced into vehicles and driven to an unknown destination.

In these very tense conditions and with the time for their visits very limited, we treated 161 patients, including three for injuries related to violence. We also facilitated the transfer of 21 patients requiring specialized medical care to clinics supported by MSF in Tripoli.