African migrants on a rescue ship coming from Libya spoke of horrible experiences.
Many migrants from Africa and nearby regions head to a new life in Europe via Libya’s coast. In Libya they were beaten, robbed, jailed, or forced into slavery. They speak of Libya’s Arab population as not respecting blacks.
John Osifo, a 29-year-old migrant from Nigeria, spoke of the hardship he dealt with in Libya, “In Libya they are animals. They treat people like slaves. They believe blacks are slaves. That is what they call us, they say we are slaves. When they want to beat us, they beat us with pipes. They take us to jobs, force us to do hard labor without payment. They won’t pay. You’ll be forced to eat warm bread for a whole day and you work from like 10 in the morning to 8 in the night, and at the end you get nothing. Sometimes they take you to their prison where you’ll be kept and be beaten up. That is what happens in Libya.”
More migrants than usual are embarking on the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean Sea.
Many have died along the journey. There are others who are happy to make new homes in places like Italy, escaping war and other hardships back home.