The Ivorian authorities have managed to save already 155 Ivorians from the risks of slavery in Libya out of the total 595 that were there. According to our AFP colleagues at Abidjan airport, 155 Ivorians were repatriated to their country this Tuesday, November 21, 2017.
These Ivorian nationals were among the thousands of migrants who were detained in Zouara on the western side of Libya. These migrants will benefit from reintegration programs, thanks in particular to European economic aid, according to Mr. Issiaka Konate, the director of Ivorians living abroad. Other Ivorians remaining in Libya will also be repatriated in the coming days, as announced by Konaté.
“I’m happy to be here,” said Moussa Sanogo, 22, from San Pedro, West. The young man explains that he spent 4 months in Libya in very difficult and inhuman conditions that one can imagine. He said he was “locked in a small room with 60 other people with dirty clothes, without being able to wash. In the morning, we wake you up and make you work. Construction, building, work in the fields, household, everything … You are hit all the time until the blood flows. With sticks, iron … All, we have scars on the body. We give you a piece of bread and a piece of cheese. We were slaves, “he adds,” blowing regularly or shaking his head as he recalls his memories. It’s impossible to sleep. We have nightmares, he concludes.
It all started with the shocking documentary about the auction of migrants as slaves. The documentary was broadcast on the American television network CNN and was relayed by European and African media. Which provoked world indignation.
It must be said that since the fall of the regime of Muhammar Gaddafi in 2011, smugglers are taking advantage of the absence of a real cordon and total impunity in Libya to dazzle tens of thousands of people seeking a life better a passage to Italy that is 300 kilometers from the Libyan coast.