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Statements and speeches Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

Comment by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk on floods in Libya

13 September 2023

People walk amidst the debris, following a powerful storm and heavy rainfall hitting the country, in Derna, Libya September 13, 2023. Ⓒ REUTERS/Esam Omran Al-Fetori

“I am profoundly distressed that thousands of lives have been so brutally swept away in eastern Libya, and so many more people have lost their loved ones, their homes, their communities, and their access to basic needs. Storm Daniel is yet another lethal reminder of the catastrophic impact that a changing climate can have on our world.

I call on all Libyan political actors to overcome political deadlocks and divisions and to act collectively in ensuring access to relief. This is a time for unity of purpose: all those affected must receive support, without regard for any affiliations. It is important that particular care is taken to ensure protection of groups in vulnerable situations – who are rendered even more at risk in the aftermath of such a disaster. Human rights need to be at the centre of the response to this heartbreaking situation. We need to invest in prevention and resilience.

I stand in solidarity with the people of Libya, with my deepest condolences to those who are mourning irreplaceable losses.”


For more information and media requests, please contact:

In Geneva
Ravina Shamdasani : + 41 22 917 9169 / [email protected] or
Marta Hurtado : + 41 22 917 9466 / [email protected]

In Nairobi
Seif Magango : + 254 788 343 897 / [email protected]

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