The European Union (EU) has announced a €10 million programme which will contribute to the establishment of a “rights-based migration management and asylum system in Libya”. It is financed through the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI).
The new programme has a particular focus on improving living conditions for migrants in retention facilities by reviewing administrative procedures, improving services provided to migrants and facilitating their access to the local labour market.
It will also address the need for strengthening the ability of public institutions to effectively plan and deliver on migration management issues in line with international standards and best practices, to guarantee that migrants are treated with full respect of human rights and human dignity and guaranteed international protection when need be.
The new initiative complies with the revised 2011-2013 National Indicative Programme which was signed on 30 August 2012 between the new Libyan authorities and the EU. The programme is also in line with EU's aim to support the transition to a democratic, stable and prosperous Libya.
Libya is both a destination country for economic migrants and a transit country for irregular migrants and people in need of international protection, heading towards the EU.
Migration to/through Libya occurs in three major forms:
- Regular migration — migration of individuals who change their country of residence voluntarily in accordance with existing immigration regulations (migrant workers);
- Forced migration (refugees and asylum seekers)— people fleeing, either as individuals in fear of persecution or in masses, in fear of collective violation of human rights or humanitarian law; or escaping as a consequence of other circumstances, such as conflict or natural or man-made disasters in their country of origin;
- Irregular migration, characterised by illegal border crossing or unauthorised stay in a foreign state, mainly for economic reasons.