Abu Dhabi: Libyan security services have freed eight Egyptians after they were abducted by human trafficking gangs in the city of Bani Walid, 180 kilometers to the southwest, police said.
Gangs are stationed in Bani Walid and are abducting migrants, trafficking them to Europe, and the city is a transit point on the road leading to the western coast, which contributes to the illegal trade, repeatedly condemned by the United Nations in many reports submitted to the Security Council.
Security Directorate in Bani Walid said that members of the police had succeeded in liberating eight people from the Egyptian community after they were kidnapped on the public road between the Qurayyat and Shwerf regions.
The directorate revealed that the kidnapped persons were sold to a human trafficker in Bani Walid, who in turn subjected them to torture and financially extorted their families to pay a ransom estimated at 30,000 dinars per person (the dollar corresponds to 6.58 dinars ($4,559), but the police intervened in a timely manner after learning of the operation, arrested those involved in this crime and freed the kidnapped.
Insulted and tortured
In June, 23 Egyptian workers were kidnapped in the city of Tarhuna, southeast of the capital, Tripoli, and a video clip showed them being insulted and tortured, but the Ministry of Interior of the Libyan National Accord managed to return them to Egypt after their captors were arrested.
The UN Panel of Experts on Libya accused in a previous report a Libyan citizen from Bani Walid named Musa Adiyab, along with 3 Eritrean citizens known as Walid, Kidani and Wudi Ishaq, who worked in a Bani Walid –based human smuggling network between Libya and Eritrea.
The team of experts revealed at the time, in interviews with a number of immigrant women, “this mafia facilitated the smuggling of Eritrean girls about three years ago to Europe after they stayed on a farm in the suburbs of Bani Walid.”
A source in the Bani Walid Security Directorate told ASharq Al Awsat the police are tracking the perpetrators to arrest them and bring them to trial, pointing out that young Egyptians – the majority of them in their 30s – were transferred to the criminal investigation department of the directorate to complete the legal procedures, before they were deported to Egypt.
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