US and UN imposes sanctions on a Libyan national

Imposing Sanctions on a Libyan Individual for Serious Human Rights Abuses

A migrant gestures from behind the bars of a cell at the detention centre

The United States and the United Nations have imposed sanctions on a man accused of running a migrant detention center in city of Zawiyah, which is about 30 miles west of Tripoli.

The United States announced Tuesday that it is freezing all assets and criminalizing any transactions with a 45-year-old Libyan national, Osama Al Kuni Ibrahim.

A statement by the US Treasury Department said Al Kuni was the de facto manager of the al-Nasr Detention Center in Zawiyah, dubbed the “Osama Prison”, about 50 kilometers from the capital Tripoli.

The US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that Al Kuni carried out “horrific abuses” against mostly African migrants, including killings, sexual violence and beatings.

“Today’s action promotes accountability and exposes the mistreatment, exploitation and violence being perpetrated against vulnerable migrants transiting Libya in pursuit of a better life,” Blinken said.

The Secretary of State also urged Libya’s government to cooperate with efforts to hold Al Kuni accountable.

The US move comes after the sanctions committee of the UN Security Council on Monday called on countries to ban Al Kuni from transiting through them and freeze any funds in their territory.

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