Rabat – Following a recent repatriation operation of Moroccan migrants stranded in Libya, a delegation landed once again in Tripoli, Libya on Saturday, December 16, to take fingerprints of about 265 migrants detained in the Sikkah detention center in the Libyan capital.
The news was confirmed on Sunday by the Tripoli branch of the Libyan Agency to Prevent Illegal Immigration on Facebook. The agency says that Morocco is working as hard as it can to complete the registration process in order to repatriate its citizens, who it says want to leave the Libyan territory “voluntarily.”
The delegation is also delivering temporary travel documents to the detained Moroccans to facilitate the return to their homeland.
An official from the Moroccan delegation told the agency that the number of Moroccans to be repatriated in the following week is estimated at 265.
The delegation member added that the Moroccan government has agreed to deploy two airplanes to repatriate its residents through the Mitiga airport.
Several videos filmed by Moroccans stranded in detention centers across Libya sparked a national outcry on social media. The videos also pushed the families of the detained migrants to protest in front of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, urging the government to find a solution for their relatives.
Nasser Hazem, a Libyan first lieutenant, pointed a finger at the Moroccan government, saying that the repatriation of Moroccans is the responsibility of the Moroccan government. “Libya is not obliged to deport them. Any immigrant of any nationality, whether Arab or African, entering Libya without procedures bears the responsibility of his mistakes,” said the lieutenant.
“Even the Moroccan government is not in charge of that person because he chose to emigrate. Do not point your fingers at governments for your own mistakes.”
On December 8, 235 Moroccan migrants arrived in Casablanca from the northwestern Libyan city of Zouara. The freed migrants were then sent through buses to their hometowns, which included Beni Mellal, Khouribga, and Guercif.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs vowed to bring the rest of Moroccan migrants. Another Moroccan delegation from the Moroccan embassy in Tunis paid an official visit in Zouara in order “to undertake all preliminary procedures to identify the persons stranded in this area.
The first repatriation operation was taken in August, which brought about 200 citizens aboard two private aircraft deployed by the Moroccan government.
The large group of Moroccans were stuck in Libya after their attempts to cross the Mediterranean to Europe. The Moroccan citizens found themselves subject of human trafficking by smugglers, before being detained by Libyan authorities.