E.g., 12/04/2020
E.g., 12/04/2020

Country Resource - Libya

Libya

LY
  • Population*..................................................................................6,890,535 (July 2020 est.)
  • Population growth rate ......................................................................... 1.94% (2020 est.)
  • Birth rate..............................................................23 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
  • Death rate......................................................... 3.5 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
  • Net migration rate.....................................-0.7 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
  • Ethnic groups..........................................Berber and Arab 97%, other 3% (includes Egyptian, Greek, Indian, Italian, Maltese, Pakistani, Tunisian, and Turkish)

Note: immigrants make up just over 12% of the total population, according to UN data (2017)

CIA World Factbook

Recent Activity

Sailors and marines on the HMS Bulwark help migrants ashore in Italy.

Even as the number of people making the dangerous journey through the Central Mediterranean from North Africa to Europe has declined since the migration and refugee crisis of 2015-16, the rate of deaths has increased. This article evaluates the role of Europe's hardening approach to trans-Mediterranean migration and the criminalization of search-and-rescue operations by nongovernmental organizations.

Migrants aboard a rubber vessel are rescued in the Mediterranean

Libya was once a prized destination for workers from around the world. But after Muammar Gaddafi’s overthrow in 2011, the country became the transit point for hundreds of thousands of Europe-bound asylum seekers and other migrants. Following Libya's 2017 deal with Italy to detain and return migrants caught at sea—which was renewed in February 2020—migrants became trapped in an unstable country, facing harrowing realities, as this article explores.

2018 African Union Ministerial Conference on Migration

While migration once was a lower-priority topic for African governments, the last decade has seen a deepening in governance. Policymakers have integrated migration into their national development strategies and mainstreamed it across policy domains such as health and education. The actions are promising on paper, yet questions remain about the extent to which they will translate to more effective migration management.

Jamal Khashoggi

Authoritarian states have long attempted to restrict citizens’ movement. But what happens when their reach extends beyond their borders? The October 2018 assassination of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi brought into sharp relief the long arm of these regimes in reaching citizens abroad. This phenomenon, “transnational authoritarianism,” further shows that the relationship between migration and authoritarianism is becoming more complex.

A man holds a sign protesting the travel ban at an airport

Two years after the Trump administration’s much-litigated travel ban was created, the policy has demonstrated a significant impact on the admission of foreigners from the banned countries, while also reshaping U.S. security vetting procedures and the refugee resettlement process in enduring ways, as this article explores on the second-year anniversary.

Stranded migrant during crisis

Migrants displaced by crisis do not benefit from international protection the way that refugees do. This article examines the experiences of labor migrants amid manmade and natural disasters in the Central African Republic, Côte d’Ivoire, Lebanon, Libya, South Africa, and Thailand, as well as stakeholder responses. Research demonstrates the agency and resilience of migrants, who develop flexible solutions in the face of crisis.

Migrants on a boat

European leaders in 2017 pursued migration partnerships with North African countries, seeking to stem maritime arrivals across the Mediterranean. Italy struck a deal with Libya to provide support in cracking down on illegal migration and smugglers, while Germany signed cooperation agreements with Egypt and Tunisia. Meanwhile, widespread reports of migrant abuse in Libya are prompting questions about the limitations and human costs of these partnerships.

Faced with a flexible, diverse, and seemingly ubiquitous smuggling industry, governments have struggled to respond. Smuggling and trafficking networks, while hardly new phenomena, were put under a harsh spotlight in 2015 for their role as intermediaries in shaping the scale and flow of migrants and asylum seekers around the world.

The Tuareg, a nomadic group of Berber origin located in several countries across North and West Africa, have been enmeshed in a complicated struggle against the Malian state since January 2012. This article explores the unique role that migration plays in shaping Tuareg grievances in the context of this crisis.

The succession of displacement and refugee crises in the Arab Spring, Côte d'Ivoire, Somalia, and Sudan has been characterized as the most troubling in some time.

Pages

Policy Briefs
July 2012

This brief provides a background on the displacement and evacuation of migrant workers caught in the Libyan civil war. It highlights questions raised as a result of this crisis regarding the response of the international community, discusses lessons learned from the Libyan experience, and identifies policy recommendations for addressing the protection needs of labor migrants during humanitarian crises.