Witness – An African immigrant cries for his missing wife in the desert between Libya and Tunisia

A video clip spread on social media platforms documented the moment an irregular African immigrant cried, mourning his wife, who was lost in the desert on the border between Tunisia and Libya.

The video clip showed a short dialogue between a journalist and an African immigrant, where the journalist asked him: What happened to your wife? He replied, “I lost consciousness, there was no drinking water. I tried to reach the place where my wife got lost and contacted the police, who tried to help me, but we did not find her.”

One of the Libyan officers said, “The young African sought help from them before dawn, and two patrols went out with him to search for his wife. Indeed, the entire area was combed on the Libyan border, and we did not find any trace of her.”

He added, “We gave him our microphone so that he could call his wife and talk to her, hoping that his wife would give us any signal or call and we would find out about her and be rescued, but to no avail. She could be on the Tunisian side.”

The young African – whose name was not known – was accompanied by other immigrants in Tunisia, before Tunisian security pushed him to the Libyan border and he was forced to leave his wife in the desert.

Earlier, activists circulated a picture of the body of an African immigrant with her son, who had died in the border area between Libya and Tunisia.

The “Migrants in Libya” organization – which cooperates with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to help migrants in the country – published a picture showing the woman’s body with her son, and said, “In Tunisia, a woman dies of thirst in the desert with her unfulfilled dream of a better life for her child, and the child dies with a dream that was never born.”

The organization added that the death of the immigrant and her son was the result of their survival without water and food and in the open, bad weather and high temperatures in remote desert areas.

Lieutenant Colonel Shawky Nasr, head of the Information Office of the Border Guard Service of the Ministry of Interior of the Government of National Unity in Libya, said that the two bodies were found on the Tunisian-Libyan border after a report from an irregular immigrant who was also in the area.

A few days ago, the Tunisian authorities began to transfer dozens of African migrants who were stationed in the city of Sfax towards the border areas with Libya and Algeria, especially after the violent clashes that took place between migrants and Tunisians, which resulted in casualties on both sides.

International organizations denounced the deterioration of the rights of African migrants, denouncing the campaigns of violent arrests and forced expulsion that they face, even though “some of them are registered with the UNHCR or have legal status in Tunisia.”

It called on the Tunisian authorities to intervene urgently to put an end to arbitrary and illegal forced returns, to ensure the necessary and dignified care for these people, and to allow humanitarian organizations to intervene to provide them with relief aid and medical care.

Source : Al Jazeera + Sanad Agency + social media sites

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