Several thousand migrants stranded in Misrata: ICRC

The international Red Cross expressed concern over the stranded migrants.

Geneva: The international Red Cross
expressed concern on Monday about several thousand foreign
migrants stranded in the open in the besieged Libyan port of

The group was found living under tarpaulins and
shelters by an International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
team that entered the city by sea for a day to evaluate
medical conditions and aid needs, spokeswoman Nicole
Engelbrecht said.

"Our main concern right now is the stranded foreign
nationals living in the vicinity of the port," she told AFP.

The Libyan Red Crescent "are estimating that we are
talking 6,000 to 7,000 people, from Egypt, Sudan, Chad and
other countries," Engelbrecht added.

The ICRC was unable to verify the exact tally for now.
The five ICRC staff, who arrived on Saturday with a
cargo of emergency medical supplies, visited the main hospital
and a Libyan Red Crescent hospital there before sailing back
to Benghazi on Sunday.

Engelbrecht declined to give any casualty figures
after more than three weeks of fighting for control of
rebel-held Misrata because they had not been verified.

An opposition spokesman said eight rebels were killed
by pro-Kadhafi forces and 22 were wounded on Saturday.

A doctor at Misrata hospital gave AFP the same death
toll for Saturday, saying they included civilians, while
putting the number of wounded at 25.
Engelbrecht said the ICRC team wanted to return to
"We want to have the support of both sides, and this
was organised as a one-day visit," she said.

The ICRC has been providing aid in mainly
opposition-held northeastern Libya for several weeks.

The visit to Misrata was part of an operation on
Saturday to expand relief aid into northwestern Libya after an
ICRC team in Tripoli held talks with Libyan authorities.

The Red Cross ship was carrying enough supplies to
treat 300 war wounded.

Bureau Report

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