Published: Fri, December 01, 2017
Medical | By Garry George

South Africa Denounces Slave Trade in Libya

South Africa Denounces Slave Trade in Libya

"It is further expected that the Summit will adopt Joint Priority Projects for the period 2018 to 2022 that would focus on mobilising investments for Africa's structural transformation, human capacity development, including capacitating the youth, and on addressing peace and security, ensuring good governance and creating resilient societies". Instead, it turned into emergency planning to end the open buying and selling of slaves in Libya.

But it was largely overshadowed by shock TV footage of black Africans sold as slaves in Libya, prompting protests in many countries and demands for action. The slaves were being sold for as little as $400, either to be exploited as day laborers or used to extract ransom payments from their families back home.

"South Africa has condemned the disturbing reports of auctioning of African migrants in Libya as slaves, calling it inhumane acts incongruent with the ideals of the African Union and relevant African and worldwide instrument such as the Charter on Human and Peoples" Rights. But they've been blocked by efforts of the European Union and the Libyan Coast Guard to make the crossing.

In a meeting late Wednesday, the leaders of Libya, France, Germany, Chad, Niger and four other countries agreed on a plan to allow migrants facing abuse in Libyan detention camps to be evacuated within days or weeks, mostly to their home countries. They also agreed on ways to resettle the migrants and break up the criminal networks bringing them to North Africa.

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHRC), over 148 200 migrants and refugees have taken the Mediterranean routes to enter Europe in the first nine months of 2017, and 2 700 people reportedly died in the process.

The South African government of President Jacob Zuma is contending with criminal gangs who traffic foreign nationals into Africa's most advanced economy in search of better opportunities.

The EU has already set up multi-billion-euro funds to promote Africa's economic development while deepening counter-terrorism cooperation with African countries where Islamist militant groups are spreading.

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