Header image for news printout

Libya: UN expert on internally displaced people set for first official visit to Libya

GENEVA (24 January 2018) – United Nations human rights expert Cecilia Jimenez-Damary will conduct her first official visit to Libya from 25 to 31 January 2018, to assess the human rights situation of people who have fled their homes.

“An estimated 192,762 Libyans have been displaced from their homes but remain within the country,” said Jimenez-Damary, the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons (IDPs).

“This visit provides an important and timely opportunity for me to engage with the Government of Libya and others on the challenges they face and to discuss legal, policy and practical measures required to respond effectively to the current displacement situation.

“I will visit displaced communities to assess their immediate human rights, humanitarian and protection needs.”

The Special Rapporteur will also explore the situation of people who have already returned to their homes. Recent figures show that nearly 317,000 people who fled their homes as a result of the 2011 conflict have since gone back.

“I aim to help the authorities find appropriate responses and durable solutions for all displaced people and those who have gone home, as well as to share experiences with the Government,” Jimenez-Damary added.

During her seven-day mission, the human rights expert will visit Tripoli as well as other locations where people have taken refuge. She will meet senior Government officials, and representatives of the UN and other human rights, humanitarian and development partners, as well as civil society organizations and displaced people.

Jimenez-Damary will share her preliminary findings and recommendations with the media at a press conference on 2 February 2018 at 10:00 local time at the UNSMIL HQ, Town Hall 6th Floor, Rue de l’ile de Charrouin, Cite les Pins, aux Berges du Lac 2, Tunis 1053, Tunisia. Access will be strictly limited to journalists.

The Special Rapporteur will present a comprehensive report on her visit to the Human Rights Council in June.


Ms. Cecilia Jimenez-Damary (Philippines) was appointed Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons by the Human Rights Council in September 2016. A human rights lawyer specializing in forced displacement and migration, she has more than two decades of experience in NGO human rights advocacy.

As a Special Rapporteur, she is part of the Special Procedures of Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures’ experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity. 

Check the UN Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement

UN Human Rights, Country Page: Libya 

For more information and media requests, please contact:
In Tunis (during the mission): Jean El Alam (+216 97 408 051 /
In Geneva (before and after the mission): Katrine Gertz Schlundt (+41 22 917 9599 /

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts please contact:
Jeremy Laurence – (+ 41 22 917 9383 /

Concerned about the world we live in? Then STAND UP for someone’s rights today. #Standup4humanrights and visit the web page at http://www.standup4humanrights.org