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Egypt condemns alleged slavery auctions in Libya, praises efforts to investigate

Ahram Online , Tuesday 28 Nov 2017
 A migrant holds his head as he stands in a packed room at the Tariq Al-Matar detention centre on th
A migrant holds his head as he stands in a packed room at the Tariq Al-Matar detention centre on the outskirts of the Libyan capital Tripoli on November 27, 2017. (AFP)
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Egypt's foreign ministry has expressed its deep concern over allegations of slave auctions in Libya at which immigrants seeking to cross illegally to Europe are bought and sold, as reported by international news organisations earlier this month.

In a statement on Tuesday, the ministry said, "Egypt expresses its complete rejection of all the abuse against immigrants and refugees in a way that harms their rights or human dignity."

The ministry added that Egypt appreciates the decision of Libya's presidential council to investigate those reports and allegations as a step toward bringing those responsible to account.

Earlier in November, CNN aired an exclusive documentary showing "Libya's migrant slave trade", alleging that African immigrants are abused and sold at slave auctions to work in Libya, before heading to Europe illegally.

According to the documentary, slave auctions are held in several cities.

In its statement on Tuesday, the ministry said that, at time when human rights are promoted around the world, Egypt considers "those huge abuses" a reflection of the failure of the policies that some countries have adopted on the issue of migration.

"Those policies are based mainly on security and the closure of borders to the African immigrants, as well as those who escape from conflicts," said the statement, criticizing those policies that encourage immigrants to turn to human traffickers to cross into Europe.

The ministry also highlighted Egypt's efforts in fighting human trafficking, calling on the international community to deal with the problem of illegal immigration as a multi-faceted issue with economic, social, political and security dimensions.

The Egyptian foreign ministry also welcomed the unanimous UN Security Council resolution no.2388 condemning human trafficking in all its forms.

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