On 17 February 2011, political protests began in Libya which rapidly evolved into a revolution resulting in the overthrow of the Gadhafi regime by late October. Intense fighting, displacement of thousands of people, flight across borders, destruction of houses and infrastructure, whole parts of towns and cities were a result of this uprising. Physical scars are still visible across the country today.
European Commission Humanitarian Aid & Civil Protection and the EU Member States contributed to the relief efforts and to the repatriation of thousands of migrant workers as soon as needs became apparent. Throughout the upheaval, following the moving front lines, and when villages and towns became gradually accessible, the aid focused on providing assistance to those people who needed it most. In total, €80.5 million was made available through ECHO for humanitarian aid and repatriation operations. The timeline describes this assistance in more detail.
Today, two major humanitarian concerns persist in Libya: protection of the civilian population groups, in particular ethnic minority groups and Sub-Saharan Africans and the presence of unexploded ordnances (UXOs), arms and ammunition. These activities have been the focus of ECHO's aid since Libya was declared liberated.