PALERMO, Italy (Reuters) – Italian prosecutors on Monday ordered the arrest of three folks suspected of torturing migrants in a detention middle in north-west Libya.
The lads, a 22-year-old Guinean and two Egyptians aged 26 and 24, are believed to be a part of a gaggle that kidnapped and mistreated dozens of individuals, the judicial order seen by Reuters mentioned.
Prosecutors collected testimony from a number of migrants detained within the former navy base of Zawyia, who mentioned they acknowledged their former jailers amongst residents of a migrant registration middle in Sicily.
“I’ve been overwhelmed a number of occasions. I suffered actual torture that left scars on my physique… I used to be whipped with electrical wires,” one of many migrants informed magistrates, in response to the judicial doc.
The migrants mentioned the jail was surrounded by excessive partitions and had a blue gate on the entrance. Individuals had been separated in response to their intercourse or ethnic group and guarded by armed males.
The pinnacle of the middle was described as a brief, balding Libyan man referred to as Ossama, who was feared for his brutality.
“Ossama is essentially the most ruthless… as a result of torture practised, (he) was accountable for two murders of two migrants,” one other migrant informed investigators.
Girls had been systematically raped and prisoners had been allowed to name their households to ask for fee in return for his or her freedom. Those that didn’t pay had been typically killed or bought to human smugglers.
Libyan migrant detention facilities are sometimes managed by armed teams. Support staff and rights teams have lengthy denounced them for violence and appealed for his or her closure.
However the facilities have continued to function, receiving new arrivals from boats intercepted by Libya’s EU-backed coastguard.
“This investigation… confirms the inhumane residing circumstances in Libya’s so-called detention facilities, and the necessity to act, together with at worldwide stage,” mentioned Luigi Patronaggio, chief prosecutor of the Sicilian metropolis of Agrigento.
Reporting by Wladimiro Pantaleone, writing by Angelo Amante, enhancing by Ed Osmond