Situation Report

Lowest number of access constraints since pre-pandemic levels

The number of access constraints reported during February 2021 through the Access Monitoring and Reporting Framework (AMRF) was 220, which is the lowest number of constraints for a single month since the launch of the AMRF and a 33% decrease compared to January. Bureaucratic constraints impeding entry of humanitarian personnel and assets into the country continue to make up nearly half of all reported constraints. Processes for visas for INGO staff and for registration of INGOs in Libya have not been clearly communicated by the authorities, causing inconsistencies in the procedures. Similar difficulties continue with the importation of health items into Libya as there are no clear and consistent procedures set by the relevant authorities, which has led organizations to dispose of health items because they were held at airports and seaports beyond their expiry dates.[1]

To help address such issues, the co-chairs of the International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Working Group (Berlin process) organized the seventh plenary of the Working Group on 9 March with the presence of representatives of member states. The discussion focused on “expanding humanitarian space in areas of risk of contention” and featured presentations from the co-chairs of the Humanitarian Access Working Group (HAWG); OCHA and the Libyan INGO Forum (LIF), as well as the East and West branches of the Commission for Civil Society (CCS). During the discussion, the HAWG co-chairs stressed the importance of the CCS’s support in the following areas:

1) Announcing clear visa procedures for INGOs that are conducive to humanitarian work and clearly identifying the roles and responsibilities of all involved.

2) Integrating active local actors (NNGOs) in the humanitarian coordination structure and identifying areas where capacities need to be strengthened.

3) Advocating for improved humanitarian access vis-à-vis other local and national actors, including armed groups.

4) Promoting accountability to affected populations by assessing needs on the ground, enabling stronger linkages and interaction between affected populations and humanitarian workers.

5) Supporting the full compliance of the humanitarian community with its humanitarian principles and joint operating principles.

The HAWG endorsed a set of Joint Operating Principles tailored to the Libyan context in February, which highlight the ground rules and red lines that need to be adhered to by members of the humanitarian community. Full compliance with the principles will help strengthen the collective approach of the humanitarian community and strengthen its efforts to mitigate the various humanitarian access challenges.

[1] Access Monitoring and Reporting Framework (AMRF) – February 2021