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Tunisia reopens its main border crossing with Libya

[JURIST] Tunisia reopened its main border crossing with Libya on Saturday after suspending it on Friday after thousands of Egyptian and other foreign nationals broke through part of a fence at the Ras Ajdir crossing. Fleeing the violence in Libya, thousands of people have been migrating into Tunisia [Al Jazeera report]. Tunisian news agency TAP [official website] reported that authorities closed the border [TAP report] after a Tunisian police officer was wounded by gunfire from the Libyan side of the border. According to a security official at the Ras Jedir checkpoint, Tunisia will alternate between opening and closing the crossing [AFP report].

The treatment of refugees [JURIST news archive] is a controversial issue worldwide. Last year Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] urged [JURIST report] the EU to allow migrants and asylum seekers to find refuge in Europe. The statement followed a tragedy earlier that month in which hundreds of migrants drowned on their way from Libya to Italy. Earlier that year the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) [official website] stated it is increasingly worried [JURIST report] for the safety of civilians in the Central African Republic. In September 2013 the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) [advocacy website] and the League of Defense of Human Rights in Iraq called on the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) [official website] to investigate the deaths of more than 50 refugees [JURIST report] discovered in Iraq. In August the UN Human Rights Committee [official website] declared [JURIST report] that Australia's indefinite detention of 46 recognized refugees on security grounds amounted to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

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