United Nations rights chief: European Union policy on migrants in Libya 'inhuman

The EU's policy of aiding Libyan authorities to intercept migrants and return them to detention is "inhuman", the United Nations said on Tuesday, APA reports quoting BBC.

Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein decried "unimaginable horrors" faced by 19,900 migrants now detained in the North African country, more than 2? times the number in mid-September. "What was an already dire situation has now turned catastrophic".

"The detention system for migrants in Libya is broken beyond fix", Hussein said.

"The increasing interventions by the European Union and its member states have done nothing so far to reduce the level of abuses suffered by migrants", said Hussein.

Libya's Department of Combating Illegal Migration (DCIM) said nearly 20,000 people were now in their facilities, dramatically up from just 7,000 in September.

"Our monitoring, in fact, shows a fast deterioration in their situation in Libya".

He said that only alternatives to detention can save migrants' lives and physical security, preserve their dignity and protect them from further atrocities.

Thousands of migrants have died attempting to cross the Mediterranean from Africa into Europe.

He called for the creation of domestic legal measures and the decriminalisation of irregular migration to ensure the protection of migrants' human rights.

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