UNSMIL, US condemn Boumtari’s detention and HSC members’ travel ban at Mitiga Airport

Jul 13, 2023 | International actors

On 13 July, the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) said it was ‘deeply disturbed’ by the ‘continued abductions, arbitrary arrests, and disappearances of citizens and public figures by various security actors in Libya’, specifically citing the detention of former Finance Minister Faraj Boumtari at Mitiga Airport, as well as the travel ban on five members of the High State Council (HSC). It said that such acts ‘create a climate of fear, promote tensions between communities and tribes, and have serious implications for the unification of national institutions,’ stressing such conduct is not conducive to elections. UNSMIL urged Libyan authorities and security bodies to ‘release all those arbitrarily detained’ and called on the relevant authorities to ‘ensure respect of human rights and the rule of law’. UNSMIL also called for an end to the oil fields’ shutdown triggered by Boumtari’s detention, which would ‘needlessly cost the Libyan people their main source of income’. The following day, the United States Embassy supported UNSMIL’s statement, saying it ‘strongly advises against any actions that can lead to further tensions and undermine the aspirations of the Libyan people’.