By Rafiu Ajakaye
Libya has denied complicity in the alleged slave trade, describing it as “criminal and an isolated practice”.
The denial came after CNN aired on Nov. 14 a shocking video footage showing African migrants being sold as slaves for just $400 in lawless regions near the capital Tripoli.
Libya blamed the crisis on failure of several countries to implement necessary protocols on human trafficking.
“The government of National Accord renews its condemnation of the criminal practice of trading and trafficking of human beings,” Libyan Embassy to Nigeria said in a statement on Friday.
The statement said that the authorities have launched an investigation and anyone found guilty in the purported slavery will be punished in line with Libyan law.
The embassy said the authorities are doing a lot to protect immigrants but they lack resources to cope with the festering crisis.
“Libya is harmed by (human trafficking) and rejects being held responsible,” it asserted.
The statement also urged the EU and the international community to cooperate with the countries of origin to stop this phenomenon as “contained in the Tripoli Declaration of 22-23 December 2006 on immigration and development.”
It also called for support to the Libyan authorities with technical and logistical needs in a bid to control its southern border since Libya is the major route for immigration across the Mediterranean Sea.
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