There has been a lot of talk, information and coordinates about the situation of migrants and asylum seekers in Libya. Between detention centers and victims of human trafficking networks, asylum seekers hide with “moral anxiety and despair” while waiting to be questioned about their relocation requests by the UNHCR. UNHCR has previously stated that the processing of such applications takes a lot of time, as well as the approval of countries involved in resettlement programs. However, out of desperation, asylum seekers are looking for ways to help them speed up the processing of their requests, and here people or networks sign it, which deceives them about their ability to move their files and obtain approval for their relocation in exchange for money. . The Commission has completely denied this issue and pointed out that all its services are free and that it has no tolerance for fraud and corruption that may occur in its name.
“If you want to move your file with the UNHCR, contact us privately”, “The file transfer service with the UNHCR in Libya. The result is guaranteed and relocation is safe”, “Important warning to the refugee brothers and sisters .. Relocation of the file of the United Nations office and approval of the country in which you live And the relocation interviews will be scheduled … For details, please contact us. ”
The above are comments posted by their owners on a number of Facebook pages in Libya targeting migrants and asylum seekers with files at the UNHCR. The authors of the comments promise the migrants to move their files to the UNHCR offices in Libya, and to facilitate the process of their resettlement there easily and quickly, but in exchange for a financial compensation.
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To convince their victims, they pretend to be UNHCR employees in Libya, and talk details that could mislead migrants into believing they are addressing real employees.
“US $ 1,200 for relocation approval!”
Asmaa, a Palestinian refugee born in Libya, lives with her children in Tripoli. In 2014, her family left for Germany, and she stayed with her husband in Libya.
Later, Asmaa divorced her husband, and he left her alone with three children. She tried to go to her family in Germany, but her visa was denied several times. Because she is a refugee, she is already registered with the UNHCR, and she is waiting for her file to be relocated.
“Waiting in Libya is difficult,” says Asmaa, “especially for a woman in my situation. My family in Germany tried to request family reunification for me and my children, but the authorities there informed them that the issue was very complicated for Palestinian asylum. document holders. “
The single mother had no choice but to request relocation. I applied to the UNHCR in Libya earlier this year, and since then I have been interested in UNHCR news and asylum applications. “I started following through social media groups that specialize in asylum applications and UNHCR news. There are those who share useful information through these groups. One of the Sudanese members gave me the phone number of someone who said he was an employee. from the UNHCR and can help move the files. I called him directly and gave him all the details, only to be surprised by his request of my $ 1,200 to move the file. He told me said the outcome was guaranteed and resettlement was certain. “
Asmaa did not respond and preferred to wait.She called the UNHCR office to ask for her file, and as usual they asked her to wait for a phone call from them to set an interview date. But waiting is a dark and disturbing space, which Asmaa could not stand.
“I got a woman quite a few days ago who posted a comment on a page about asylum in Libya, in which she said that anyone who would like to have his file transferred to the UNHCR should contact me privately. I immediately sent her a message regarding the file move, and she told me that the issue was guaranteed and required $ 1 200. When I told her that UNHCR services are free and that she is supposed to use these services to mock people as an employee, she mocked me and my opinion and told me to wait years for an answer to my request. “
I paid the money and I’m still waiting.
Asthma is not the only case Muhajir News has contacted about similar incidents. Mutassim, a Sudanese immigrant who has been living in Libya for three years, applied for resettlement two years ago and is still waiting for a date for the initial interview.
Mutassim called Muhajir News and spoke to people who claimed to be UNHCR employees in Libya, “They told me that resettlement was guaranteed, all I had to do was give them my file number and the amount of $ 1,500. “Whoever contacted me was very convincing and arrogant. I agreed and paid the money, and I’m still waiting for now.”
They also communicated with Mutasem through social media, specifically through Facebook. They often talk about general asylum laws and policies, and personify UNHCR employees.
“Our services are free and there is no tolerance for fraud and corruption at all.”
Caroline Gluck, UNHCR spokesperson in Libya, said in a telephone conversation with Mihajer News that anyone claiming to be able to move the files of asylum seekers to UNHCR offices in Libya in exchange for financial compensation is completely illegal. Emphasize that UNHCR and its staff do not receive any money from asylum seekers.
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In response to an email, Gluck said: “UNHCR has no tolerance for fraud and corruption. All our services are free, and we make sure we make them public and visible through posters and leaflets in all our buildings and on our official social media pages. “
Glock called on refugees, migrants and asylum seekers to immediately report any cases of fraud or corruption in which they have been victims, stressing that such reports and complaints will be treated “strictly confidential … Only senior UNHCR staff in “Libya has the right to access the complaint, which is being processed in great secrecy.”
The UN spokesperson attached her letter with mechanisms and addresses through which those complaints could be sent.
Through the UNHCR complaint boxes at the UNHCR registration office in Al-Sarraj, Tripoli.
Via the fax number of the UNHCR Inspector General’s Office in Geneva 0041227397380
By telephone at the Office of the Inspector General of the Office of the High Commissioner in Geneva 0041227398844
Via email from the UNHCR Inspector General’s Office in Geneva, email@example.com
Via the UNHCR website https://www.unhcr.org/php/complaints.php