Answer to Written Question: Human trafficking in Libya: the European Union is encouraging slavery
(Source: European Parliament)
Answer given by Ms Johansson
on behalf of the European Commission
Since 2017, the Commission has sought to build Libyan authorities’ capacity in migration management, in particular to conduct coast guard operations and combat criminal networks engaged in migrant smuggling with an envelope of EUR 62.5 million. The EU Border Assistance Mission in Libya plays an important role in assisting the Libyan authorities in the areas of border management, law enforcement and criminal justice. During the EU-North African ministerial conference against migrant smuggling in July 2020, Libya’s Interior Minister confirmed his country’s commitment to combating migrant smuggling networks, which the new Libyan Government of National Unity has reaffirmed. The EU stands ready to reinvigorate its partnership with Libya, including on migration and border management.
The European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) plays an important role in EU efforts to manage migration along the Central Mediterranean route. Frontex is cooperating with European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR) Operation Irini on promoting integrated border management, situational awareness and risk analysis, with a focus primarily on cross-border crimes.
Since 2017, the African Union-EU-United Nations (UN) Task Force has sought to save and protect the lives of migrant and refugees in Libya. This has enabled the launch of a major assisted voluntary return programme and evacuation operation, with 52,899 voluntary humanitarian returns of migrants from Libya facilitated by the International Organization for Migration and 6,235 evacuations of refugees from Libya by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees mainly via the Emergency Transit Mechanisms in Niger and Rwanda.