The UN says it is “deeply concerned” after a video circulated on Facebook appearing to show about 260 Somali and Ethiopian migrants and refugees being held captive in Libya.
The UN’s International Organization of Migration (IOM) says the people, who can be seen “huddled fearfully” in a room, are in the custody of smugglers or criminal gangs.
The IOM says the film was recorded by a journalist based in Turkey via a video call from the criminal gang.
One person is quoted as saying:
I have been here one year. I am beaten every day. I swear I do not eat food.
It is not clear why the video call was made, but the IOM’s Mohammed Abdiker says:
Seeing a Facebook video of innocent migrants and refugees who have been abused and tortured is deeply concerning. IOM condemns the way that criminal gangs use social media in their shocking abuse of people held against their will and to extort money from their families back home.
Libya is a major transit point for migrants trying to make their way to Europe.