Middle East

UN seeking $202 million in humanitarian aid for Libya

823,000 Libyans, including 248,000 children, are in dire need of humanitarian assistance, UN agency says

Rıyaz Khalıq   | 06.02.2019
UN seeking $202 million in humanitarian aid for Libya


By Riyaz ul Khaliq  


Libya urgently requires $202 million in humanitarian assistance for its struggling population, according to the UN.  

In a statement, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said that some 823,000 Libyans -- including around 248,000 children -- remain in need of humanitarian aid.  

Late Tuesday, the UN, along with its aid partners and Libya’s Tripoli-based government, announced the launch of a humanitarian response plan aimed at securing $202 million in aid for the country’s most vulnerable citizens.  

According to UN officials, the funds will be spent on food, healthcare, protective measures, water and sanitation services, shelter, basic household items and emergency education.  

Libya has remained dogged by turmoil and poverty since longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi was ousted and killed in a bloody NATO-backed uprising in 2011. 

Since then, thousands of Libyan families have been displaced due to ongoing conflict between various militia groups.  

Yet despite the violence, Libya is now producing well over one million barrels of oil per day, according to UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Libya Maria Ribeiro.  

“[But] this hasn’t translated into tangible benefits for the people, with many Libyans getting poorer each year,” Ribeiro said in a statement.

She added: “Basic health and education services are in a state of decay and frustrated citizens can’t understand why oil production and increased government revenue don’t lead to better living standards.”  

Ribeiro went on to assert that Libyans in densely-populated areas, especially in the country’s western and eastern regions, were subject to particularly difficult circumstances.  

“Those with the most critical needs are in the coastal area of Sirt and in southern parts of the country, where [humanitarian] access is particularly difficult due to continued violence and instability,” Ribeiro said.

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