So said Father Mussie Zerai, head of the Habeshia Agency for cooperation and development, who made the comments in a statement in which he also underlined problems in Yemen, Djibouti, Tunisia and the Egyptian Sinai.
The religious leader, who lives in Rome, says that ''hundreds of refugees are being held in slave conditions in Kufra'', where he says ''they are forced to work by armed men, who forced them to handle heavy weapons, clean tanks, without food and water, beating them constantly''. Those who are able to pay up to 800 dollars are accompanied ''by armed men as far as Tripoli, so trafficking continues to flourish as it did under Gaddafi''.
Father Zerai also spoke of refugees in detention centres in Benghazi, ''who are complaining of mistreatment'' and a lack of food, drinking water and medical treatment. In Yemen, Father Zerai condemned the detention in prison of around 240 Eritrean refugees ''in inhumane conditions'', saying that they are thought to have contracted a contagious illness.
Acts of intolerance have also been carried out against Christians in the Shousha refugee camp in Tunisia, close to the Libyan border, for which Father Zerai has asked the UNHCR to intervene.
As far as the Sinai is concerned, the Habeshia agency continues to report ''human trafficking'' and the smuggling of organs from refugees hoping to reach Israel. In the area, there are said to be ''around 2,000 prisoners in the hands of traffickers'' responsible for atrocities, which have been carried out without the Egyptian government ''making the slightest effort to tackle them''. (ANSAmed).