Libya offers amnesty till Aug 15 | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, July 23, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, July 23, 2010

Undocumented Workers

Libya offers amnesty till Aug 15

Libya has granted an amnesty for the undocumented foreign workers asking all of them to obtain residence visas by August 15.
Failing to do so, however, will lead to their detention and subsequently deportation from the country, said a letter of Bangladesh embassy in Tripoli, the Libyan capital. The Daily Star has obtained a copy of the letter.
The Libyan authorities took the decision in a meeting with embassies of the countries that send labourers including Bangladesh, Egypt, Algeria, Tunisia, Sudan, Chad, Somalia, Nigeria, Male and Turkey.
Libya, which hired some 35,000 Bangladeshi workers since 2009, has taken the initiative as part of its efforts to bring the foreign workers sector under a discipline, the letter said.
The issue is significant for Bangladesh, as there are a "notable number" of Bangladeshi workers having no residency visas required to work in the African country.
An estimated 90,000 Bangladeshi workers are working in Libya.
Signed by Bangladesh's first secretary (labour), Ahsan Kibria Siddequi, working in the Bangladesh embassy in Tripoli, the letter was sent to the ministries of foreign affairs and expatriates' welfare on Wednesday.
"The amnesty is very significant for Bangladesh. Now is the time that the recruiting agencies who sent workers [who are undocumented] to Libya take immediate steps to help them secure residence visas," the letter said.
There are many Bangladeshi workers who left their original hiring companies and most of them do not have passports, Ahsan Kibria said in the letter, adding that it will be difficult to regularise their status even during the amnesty period.

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