“I have been sold four times as a slave” – ​​The story of a Somali migrant in Libya

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Mohamed Abdirahman, one of the Somali migrants repatriated from Libya who was returned to Mogadishu, described the brutal treatment he had received while held without his will.

Speaking to the BBC, Mohamed said he had been sold four times in Libya by traffickers during the days he was captured.

“The four times I was bought at different prices, once I was sold for $5,500, another time for $6,250 and the other, somebody paid $4,000 to hold me as a slave,” Mohamed said.

He also said that he had managed to escape from his last captors, and then that he had been able to reach Tripoli whilst walking a few days later, cold and hungry.

Upon arrival in Tripoli, Mohamed contacted the Somali embassy and told them he wanted to return to Somalia, where he was returned home.

He said that during his migration trip to Europe he had suffered a lot, especially during his stay in Libya.

“Punishment is different. Libya is a cruel country with no regards for human suffering, very cruel. Sometimes food is cut off, camps are overcrowded, and in some places you are sprinkled with cold water for no reason.”

Libya has been plagued by “alleged abuse of migrants, especially upon Africans,” according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Hundreds of Somalis are being held in Libya as they try to cross the border into Italy.

The detainees include those in Libyan government prisons and those in the custody of unarmed militias, who will be difficult to release until ransom is paid.


Somali migrants in distress in Libya

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