June 12 (UPI) — The United Nations on Thursday announced the Government of National Accord is investigating the discovery of at least eight mass graves in Libya.
The U.N. Support Mission in Libya said it welcomed a decision by the justice minister to establish a committee to investigate, secure the mass graves, identify the victims, establish causes of death and return the bodies to next of kin.
“UNSMIL notes with horror the discovery of at least eight mass graves in past days, the majority of them in Tarhuna. International law requires that the authorities conduct prompt, effective and transparent investigations into all alleged cases of unlawful deaths,” the organization said.
Lutfi Tevfik Misrati, head of an office of the Libyan government investigating disappearances, said there were 10 to 12 bodies in one of the graves.
“The region is full of corpses,” Misrati said.
The Libyan army recently liberated Tarhuna from forces loyal to rebel Khalifa Haftar and the government announced Friday it found 106 bodies in a hospital in the town shortly after the rebel forces were removed.
Libyan Interior Minister Fathi Bashaga said Haftar’s militias burned some prisoners in containers and buried others alive in mass graves.
The government launched Operation Peace Storm in March to combat attacks from Haftar’s forces that have been ongoing since April 2018, resulting in more than 1,000 deaths.