UNSMIL alarmed by continuing escalation; condemns acts of retribution in western coastal cities, indiscriminate shelling of Tripoli
TRIPOLI, 15 APRIL 2020 – The United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) is alarmed by the continuing escalation of violence in Libya, particularly by the intensification of fighting in the past few days, resulting in civilian casualties and risking new waves of displacement.
UNSMIL notes with grave concern reports of attacks on civilians, the Surman Prison break and release of 401 prisoners without adequate legal proceedings or vetting, desecration of corpses, retribution, including looting, robberies and torching of public and private properties, in western coastal towns recently seized by the Government of National Accord (GNA) forces. UNSMIL is following up the above allegations, which if verified, would constitute grave violations of international human rights and humanitarian law.
The Mission also condemns the Libyan National Army (LNA) forces indiscriminate bombardment of Tripoli with rockets, many of which have landed on civilian neighborhoods, resulting in casualties.
UNSMIL warns that acts of revenge will further escalate the conflict, and lead to a cycle of revenge that threatens the social fabric in Libya. The Mission call on parties to the conflict to deescalate, curb incitement, and immediately respect the repeated calls by the Secretary-General and international partners for a humanitarian pause.