Arbitrary and Prolonged Detention in Libya Workshop Concludes

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As part of its effort to promote human rights and to elaborate a national reconciliation strategy in Libya based on an inclusive dialogue and a multi-stakeholders consultation, UNSMIL has facilitated a two-day workshop under the theme “Addressing Arbitrary and Prolonged Detention in Libya within a National Reconciliation Framework” on 13-14 September in Tunis.

Prolonged, arbitrary detention without judicial review is an important factor of instability and a main source of grievances in Libya. Thousands of people have been deprived of their freedom without being brought before a judge, receiving judicial review, or being charged with an offense, and in some cases even without any apparent legal basis for their detention.

The workshop, which gathered more than 40 representatives of municipalities, local councils, civil society, academics and legal experts, touched upon the main political and legal obstacles to addressing arbitrary and prolonged detention in Libya.

Participants discussed immediate practical, legal and political measures for the release or due process of conflict-related, prolonged detainees, suggesting concrete criteria, policies and measures for their release while respecting international norms, national law, and the rights of victims. They learned from previous experiences in local reconciliation and ceasefire agreements that included measures related to the release of detainees or the exchange of prisoners.

The workshop concluded its deliberations with a set of recommendations addressed to the legislative authority, the government and municipalities as well as judicial and prisons actors.

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