In 2011, NATO backed an effort to take down the dictatorship of Muammar Mohammed Abu Minyar Gaddafi, who had previously ran the country of Libya for 40 years. At the time, the overthrow of Gaddafi seemed to finally rid a country of an authoritarian dictator who did more wrong than good.
However, recent news articles point to the dismantling of Gaddafi’s distatorship as the fuel for the chaos in the country for the past seven years. This chaos brought about an issue that is not relatively new, yet is only now beginning to surface in the news.
Reports by CNN reporters Nima Elbagir, Raja Razek, Alex Platt, and Bryony Jones, back in late November 2017, brought about allegations of slavery in the African Nation. They witnessed “dozens of people” being sold to the highest bidder in the Libyan city of Tripoli.
According to Time News those being sold at auction are refugees and migrants trying to reach the shores of Europe by way of the Mediterranean Sea. Due to the increased crack down by the European Union on its borders there has become a blockage of migrants in the African country.
Thus, militia groups and people smugglers have begun to sell the migrants to anyone who can pay, according to BBC news. Libya has not been silent on this issue, as they have condemned the workings of the militia groups and the slave trade overall; yet in their eyes they need more help from the global efforts in order to squash the trade, reports CNN.
The international community has seemingly come together in regards to this conflict as numerous nations have condemned the human trafficking, with the French President Emmanuel Macron calling the situation a “crime against humanity.”
In addition, a Times News article spoke of protests occurring in the capital of Paris in front of the Libyan embassy, pleading with officials to do anything to help the situation occurring in their country. It should be noted that although this information has only begun to surface on the world stage of late, there is no saying how long the atrocities of these auctions have been occurring.
Maurice Middleberg of CNN states that on the international stage many countries have urged for there to be repatriation of the migrants. In simple terms, this means that many of the countries monitoring this situation are urging Libya and the United Nations to help get the migrants back to their original countries and reduce the level of slavery in Libya. As of now, no plan is in place to fully end slavery in Libya, but that does not suggest the situation is hopeless.
By brining awareness to the situation in Libya and starting a conversation, more could be done in the future to put pressure on the Libyan government to help reduce the level of slavery.