Libya

The information below is based on the Report of the Secretary-General to the Security Council (A/68/878–S/2014/339) issued on 15 May 2014.

The situation for children in Libya remained precarious in 2013, with political tensions escalating into armed confrontations in al-Ajailat, al-Shagiga, Ghadamis, Tripoli, Benghazi and Sabha, sometimes involving the use of heavy weapons. The United Nations continued to experience difficulty in gathering information owing to lack of security and a full monitoring mandate. Notwithstanding attempts by the Government to increase its control, many armed brigades under the nominal control of the Government continued to display a lack of discipline and command and control, leading in some instances to grave violations against children.

The United Nations documented the killing of 14 children (12 boys and 2 girls) between 4 and 17 years of age, and the injury of five others (four boys and one girl) in crossfire and improvised explosive device incidents or as a result of heavy weaponry. For example, in April in al-Shagiga, Nafousa Mountains, a four-year-old boy from the Mashashiya tribe was killed by a rocket hitting the family home during a clash between the Mashashiya and Zintan tribes. In three separate incidents in Benghazi on 30 July, 3 August and 3 November, four boys, between 2 and 15 years of age, were killed in improvised explosive device attacks against their fathers, who were security officers. In Tripoli on 15 November, members of a Misratah brigade stationed in the Ghargour neighbourhood of Tripoli opened fire on protestors. During the ensuing clashes in Tripoli, at least 46 people were killed, including a 15-year-old girl and a 17-year-old boy, and 516 others were injured, including an unknown number of children.

Seven incidents of attacks on hospitals were recorded by the United Nations in Benghazi and Sabha, including explosions, the targeting of medical staff and shooting inside medical facilities by armed militias. For example, on 30 July, in Benghazi, armed men broke into a secure ward in the city’s Al-Hawri hospital to carry out a revenge killing, shooting one man dead. In Benghazi, on 13 May, an improvised explosive device exploded in front of Al-Jalaa hospital, killing a
14-year-old boy and two adults as well as wounding up to 30 others. On 27 August, two out of three hospitals in Benghazi closed down owing to staff protesting against violence, following the beating of nurses, stabbing of doctors and smashing of equipment by armed elements. In addition, in May 2013, a device was detonated inside a school in the al-Salmani neighbourhood of Benghazi by unknown perpetrators without casualty. In October 2013, also in Banghazi, another explosion took place in al-Alwiya al-Hura school.

The United Nations continued to visit detention facilities where children were held, including six Tawergha boys 16 years of age in al-Wihda prison in Misrata, held since 2011 without charges. I call upon the Government of Libya to expedite the review of such cases by the competent judicial authorities as a priority.