The Ministry of the Interior of the Government of National Unity (GUN) of Libya has approved the plan and security measures for the conference on legal migration entitled “Safe Mediterranean and a Stable South”, which will be held tomorrow and on 28 November in Tripoli and will see the participation of the labor ministers of the Sahel and Sahara countries. The Tripoli Security Directorate indicated, in a statement, "the distribution of security tasks between the components of the Ministry of the Interior and the security agencies involved". According to the Libyan newspaper “Al Wasat”, members of the delegations have begun to arrive in the capital, led by the executive secretary of the Community of Sahel and Sahara States, Ado Al Hajji Abu. The regional, continental and international event is the first of its kind in Libya, it will also include Italy and the European Union and marks an important paradigm shift: for the first time, in fact, the Libyan authorities want to include and insert migrants into the Libyan economy.
The turning point occurred on October 25 with the memorandum of understanding to strengthen legal migration with Bangladesh, aimed at "facilitating working procedures" and "improving opportunities for understanding". The text, according to the Libyan news agency “Lana”, allows Libya to organize and register Bangladeshi workers, complete their legal procedures, organize their legal entry and ensure repatriation to their country of origin. The agreement will also increase mutual cooperation in the face of challenges posed by the number of Bangladeshi workers who have entered Libya illegally, the Libyan News Agency adds. According to the latest report from the World Organization for Migration (IOM), updated in June 2023, there are at least 23.563 Bangladeshis present in the North African country, equal to 3 percent of the overall immigrant population of 703.369 people.
According to the Libyan source consulted by "Nova", the Tripoli government intends to offer the same memorandum signed with Bangladesh to the other Sahel and Sahara countries as well. If successful, it would be a historic achievement. According to IOM data, Libya hosts 175.132 migrants from Niger (25 percent of the total migrant population), another 165.924 of Egyptian nationality (24 percent), plus 123.607 originating from Chad (18 percent), another 30.095 from from Nigeria (4 percent), 14.783 from Ghana (2 percent) and 12.581 from Mali (2 percent). Also due to the economic crisis and the need of the OPEC member country to diversify its industry, the Tripoli government seems to have realized that regularizing this enormous number of migrants can contribute not only to reducing irregular emigration by sea towards the European coasts, but also to develop the country. The Tripoli authorities presented this ambitious project, without going into details and contents, during a round table with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Libya, in the presence of the European Union ambassador, Nicola Orlando, and of the Italian ambassador, Gianluca Alberini, and to diplomatic representatives of various other countries.
The dossier also closely concerns Italy, since at least 47.328 illegal migrants arrived from Libya by sea as of November 17, according to Interior Ministry data seen by "Nova Agency". More than half of the migrants who landed in Italy from the Libyan coast, around 30 thousand, left from Tripolitania, the western region of the North African country under the control of the government led by the prime minister Abdulhamid Dabaiba. From Cyrenaica, an eastern region dominated by the general Khalifa Haftar and hit last September by the devastating cyclone "Daniel", over 16 thousand migrants have arrived to date. According to the latest IOM estimates, from the beginning of the year to 11 November 13.611 migrants were intercepted at sea and returned to Libya, of which 10.352 men, 943 women, 494 minors and 2.443 people whose gender data are not available. The death of 939 migrants was confirmed, while 1.248 are still missing in attempts to emigrate to the European coasts via the central Mediterranean route (which includes both Libya and Tunisia), for a total of 2.187 deceased people.