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Daily Noon Briefing Highlights: Libya

14 Oct 2020

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Al Fallah camp for internally displaced people in Tripoli, Libya, December 2018. Credit: OCHA: Eve Sabbagh

Daily Noon Briefing Highlights 14 October 2020

Libya

In Libya, while the August ceasefire announcements and ongoing peace negotiations are encouraging, humanitarian partners are concerned about the fragile situation and a possible humanitarian disaster, should the current escalation and mobilization around Sirte lead to military operations.

The lives of more than 125,000 people in Sirte and its environs remain at great risk.

With regard to COVID-19, cases have increased exponentially across Libya. Some 44,985 cases and 656 deaths have been confirmed as of yesterday. Most new cases in the past week have been reported in western and eastern Libya, with the situation in the south concerning.

Health systems have been affected by the closure of health facilities, due to a lack of resources and staff contracting COVID-19. In addition, fuel shortages and power cuts have affected the running of health services.

A recent rapid survey carried out in Tripoli found that of 92 primary health-care facilities that were functioning before the pandemic, only 54 are still operational. The other 38 facilities have closed as a result of the impact of COVID-19, mainly due to shortages in personal protective equipment or limitations in infection prevention and control procedures.

Across the country, COVID-19 testing, tracing and treatment capacity remains extremely low, with services concentrated mainly in Tripoli and Benghazi. The only COVID-19 test lab in the south has been closed for 10 days due to extended power cuts and diesel fuel shortages.

Across Libya, humanitarian organizations have reached nearly 268,000 people, two thirds of the overall target, with humanitarian assistance since the beginning of the year. This includes 75,000 internally displaced people, 128,000 vulnerable, conflict-affected Libyans and recent returnees, and 66,000 migrants and refugees.