This week (30/09), 164 migrants arrived home on a Voluntary Humanitarian Return (VHR) flight from Libya. Aboard the charter, which landed at Dhaka’s Hazarat Shajalal International Airport (HSIA), were nine survivors of the tragic shooting in the Libyan town of Mizdah, where on 27 May, 30 migrants—including 26 Bangladeshis—were shot and killed in a smuggling warehouse.
Those survivors were other vulnerable migrants, including 39 people with medical conditions. IOM medical escorts traveled with the migrants to Bangladesh whereupon arrival health teams were on hand to coordinate care for requiring quarantine at government facilities. IOM teams also will provide referral support to specialized services and follow up with assistance to migrants with chronic conditions.
Eligible migrants will receive reintegration support once they have completed their government-mandated quarantine period. Follow-up care is particularly important for people who experienced physical and psychological trauma while stranded in Libya.
The deadly attack in Mizdah, southwest of Tripoli also left 11 other migrants critically injured. IOM and its partners have supported those survivors in the months following the violence.
“I can’t forget the incident, it was like living a nightmare,” said Syed Khan. “I was shot, and it took me four months to recover enough to make the journey home. Many of us haven’t fully recovered and we are still traumatized. I am grateful to IOM and the Government of Bangladesh for the medical and other support they provided in Libya and for arranging my flight home.”
COVID-19 has exacerbated the vulnerabilities of migrant workers across the world, said Giorgi Gigauri, IOM Bangladesh’s Chief of Mission.
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