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Calamitous Year for Human Rights

(Tunis) – Armed groups that support competing Libyan governments and their international benefactors have been responsible for massive civilian casualties, displacement, and destruction during 2020, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report…
Fighters of Libya's UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) during clashes at the Ain Zara frontline, in the southern suburbs of capital Tripoli, with the forces of the Libyan National Army (LNA).
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Risk of Complicity in Unlawful Airstrikes in Yemen, Libya

(Washington) – The United States should halt proposed weapons sales to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Human Rights Watch said today. It should suspend all future sales until the UAE curtails unlawful airstrikes in Yemen and Libya, halts support and…
UAE flag with Dubai skyline
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Victim-Activated Explosive Devices Endanger Human Lives

(Washington, DC) – An armed group and affiliates fighting for control of the Libyan capital, Tripoli, appear to have used antipersonnel landmines and booby traps there in late May 2020, Human Rights Watch said today. “Any use of internationally…
Fighting since April 2019 resulted in considerable damage to residential areas in the surroundings of Tripoli Airport, shown here on June 2, 2020.
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Stop Use; Secure and Destroy Stocks

(Beirut) – Forces affiliated with the Libyan National Army (LNA) used cluster munitions in a residential area in Tripoli on December 2, 2019, Human Rights Watch said today. The forces, under the command of Khalifa Hiftar, have been battling forces…
GNA checkpoint guard stands behind an expended cargo section of an RBK-250 PTAB-2.5M cluster bomb impacted into Alasfah Road near Tripoli International Airport following an attack on or around December 2, 2019, Tripoli outskirts, Libya, December 18, 2019.
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Carnage in Benghazi

(Beirut) – Unidentified armed groups detonated two car bombs in front of a mosque in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi on January 23, 2018, killing at least 34 people and wounding over 90, Human Rights Watch said. According to…
People walk near a puddle of water mixed with blood at the site of twin car bombs near a mosque in the Salmani neighborhood of Benghazi that resulted in scores of deaths and injuries, Libya, January 24, 2018. © 2018 Reuters
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Seize Diplomatic Opening to Strengthen International Law

(Washington, DC) – Countries should take concrete steps to strengthen international law governing incendiary weapons, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today, ahead of a diplomatic meeting devoted to incendiary and other weapons that will be…
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But Treaty Grows Stronger as Countries Join, Destroy Stockpiles

(Geneva) – Cluster munitions have been used during 2015 in Libya, Sudan, Syria, Ukraine, and Yemen, causing unacceptable harm to civilians, Human Rights Watch said today at the release of Cluster Munition Monitor 2015. None of these countries have…
Photo of 9N235 submunitions that failed to explode during a cluster munition attack collected and displayed in Starobesheve, photo taken on October 11, 2014. © 2015 Human Rights Watch
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Investigate Reports; Secure and Destroy Weapons Stocks

(Beirut) – There is credible evidence of the use of banned cluster bombs in at least two locations in Libya since December 2014. Phone interviews with witnesses and photographic evidence reviewed by Human Rights Watch indicate that remnants of…
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Urgent Need to Destroy Mines, Other Weapons Stocks

(Tripoli) – Credible evidence has emerged showing that one or more militia groups have used antipersonnel landmines during the armed conflict involving a Zintan alliance and the Libya Dawn alliance at Tripoli Airport in July and August 2014. …
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Government’s Compensation to Torture Victim Underscores Need for Full Inquiry

(London) –The UK government’s compensation to a Libyan dissident over its complicity in his torture and rendition provides some relief but does not absolve it of the duty to investigate. A criminal investigation into his claims and a wider public inquiry…
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(Washington) – The United States government during the Bush administration tortured opponents of Muammar Gaddafi, then transferred them to mistreatment in Libya, according to accounts by former detainees and recently uncovered CIA and UK Secret Service…
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Intensification of Mine Demolitions Needed

(Tripoli) – Libya’s first steps to destroy its vast stockpile of landmines are a positive development, and the demolitions should continue, Human Rights Watch said today. On March 21, 2012, Human Rights Watch witnessed the destruction of nearly 100…
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Stockpiles of Surface-to-Air Missiles, Other Arms Found Unguarded

(Misrata) – Vast amounts of unsecured explosive weapons, including surface-to-air missiles, remain unguarded in the area around Sirte, Libya, Human Rights Watch said today. The National Transitional Council (NTC), Libya’s transitional government, has…
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Site Visits Indicate Unchecked Looting of Weapons Storage Facilities

(Tripoli) – The National Transitional Council (NTC), the de facto authority that controls most of Libya, should take immediate steps to secure and guard weapons storage facilities in the areas under its control, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights…
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Three Antivehicle and Antipersonnel Minefields Discovered

(Zintan) - Libyan government forces have placed at least three minefields containing antipersonnel and antivehicle landmines outside the village of al-Qawalish in the western Nafusa Mountains, Human Rights Watch said today. "The government's blatant…
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Placement of More Than 150 Antipersonnel Mines Confirmed

(Cairo) - Libyan government forces placed more than 150 antipersonnel landmines in at least one location in the Nafusa Mountains, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch visited the site, inspected mines that had been removed, and interviewed…
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Grads Striking Civilian Areas

(Benghazi) - Government forces are indiscriminately attacking towns in the Nafusa Mountains of western Libya almost daily, Human Rights Watch said today, after a five-day visit to the area. The attacks with Grad rockets, an inherently…
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Transitional Council Bans Antipersonnel, Antivehicle Mines

(New York) - The de facto opposition authority in Libya, the National Transitional Council, has formally pledged not to use antipersonnel and antivehicle landmines,  Human Rights Watch said today. The council also promised to destroy all mines in its…
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Human Rights Watch Witnesses Attack Into Residential Area

Tweet (New York) - Government forces loyal to the Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi, have fired cluster munitions into residential areas in the western city of Misrata, posing a grave risk to civilians, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch…
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Civilians and Aid Workers Need Protection

(New York) - Eastern Libya is littered with massive amounts of unexploded ordnance, abandoned and unsecured weapons and munitions, and recently-laid landmines from the fighting since February 2011, posing a great threat to civilians, Human Rights Watch…