In February, the IDC launched its recently published handbook There Are Alternatives (revised edition) for the MENA region. The launch was held in Tunisia in collaboration with the Danish Refugee Council (DRC), to coincide with a training event that brought together local Libyan civil society organisations, the International Organization for Migration (IOM), UNHCR, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and other international non-governmental organisations.
All civil society groups present at the training endorsed the principle of potential alternatives to detention as set out in the IDC handbook, whilst also highlighting the ways they are already working  to assist vulnerable individuals to be released from detention.
As one of the training participants, Dr Giuma Ataigha from Libyan Human Rights Association expressed
“this is a good effort and we appreciate what has been done because we are in need of such trainings and alternatives. Of course due to the political and security situation in Libya at this time we see ourselves as preparing for the future”.
The commitment from local organisations to serving refugees and migrants in limbo and unprotected, was inspiring. The IDC looks forward to offering technical support to their ongoing efforts to increase alternative options to detention for all, but particularly, those most vulnerable groups subject to exploitation and extortion, such as women and children.
For further details, please see the DRC’s press release following the launch and training event.