“Oxfam and its partners are hearing new accounts of murder, torture and other horrific abuses being suffered by refugees and other people who have fled through Libya, a place they call “hell.”

EU interior ministers are meeting in Tallinn today to approve plans for more cooperation with Libya in order to stop people from entering Europe, particularly into Italy.

Oxfam is highly concerned that these plans will only increase the suffering of people on the move. Oxfam says that European governments should be supporting search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean, and generally treating migrants in a more fair, transparent and legal manner.

In the last months, Oxfam and its Italian partners Borderline and MEDU interviewed 158 migrants who had arrived through Libya. 84 percent of them said they had experienced degrading and inhumane treatment, extreme violence or torture in Libya. A vast majority – 74 percent – said they had witnessed people they had been travelling with being murdered or tortured. A similar proportion told of deprivation of water and food. 70 percent of people said they had been detained in official or unofficial prisons while in Libya.”