Map of Libya
Map of LibyaAFP

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) said that 153 Bangladeshi migrants were repatriated from Libya.

“This week, IOM assisted 153 Bangladeshi migrants in eastern Libya in returning home through its Voluntary Humanitarian Return program,” Xinhua news agency quoted the IOM as saying on Thursday.

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“The EU-supported charter was the first VHR flight to depart from Benghazi in more than one year.

“According to the latest Displacement Tracking Matrix assessment, over 17,500 Bangladeshi migrants are estimated to live in Libya, with about a third of them in the East,” the IOM added.

The IOM runs the VHR program, which arranges the return of immigrants stranded in Libya to their homeland.

It resumed the program on 20 August after a five-month suspension due to the COVID-19 restrictions in Libya.

The IOM estimates that there are more than 600,000 illegal migrants in Libya currently.

Libya has become a preferred point of departure for thousands of immigrants who attempt to cross the Mediterranean Sea towards European shores, due to the insecurity and chaos that have plagued the country since the fall and death of its former leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

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