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humanitarian aid

Swedes evacuated from Libya

Published fredag 4 mars 2011 kl 13.05
All Swedes who have asked authorities for help to leave Libya have now been evacuated. But thousands of refugees are still unable to leave. Photo: Scanpix

Six Swedes, who have been unable to leave the Libyan capital Tripoli, have been evacuated to Malta together with several other foreign nationals.

In addition two young children and their father were evacuated on another plane, and one family arrived from the Libyan city of Benghazi by boat. This means that most of the Swedes who have been unable to leave Libya since the uprising began have been evacuated.

A 64-year-old Swedish woman, who was kidnapped when she tired to leave the city of Sirte, has also been released and has returned to Sweden.

About 40 Swedes remain in the country but they have decided to stay, according to the Swedish foreign office.

The Swedish Hercules airplane, that was used to evacuate EU-citizens, will now be made available for the UN’s refugee agency UNHCR and the International Organisation for Migration, as part of Swedish assistance to Libya.

In addition, the government on Thursday decided that the Swedish aid agency Sida should distribute $5.2 million to humanitarian organisations on the ground.

But tens of thousands of migrant workers are stalled at the borders, trying to get out of Libya. To look at Sweden’s efforts to help the humanitarian crisis, we talked to Helen Rask, head of the North African and Middle Eastern unit at Sida, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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