In early June, a Somali journalist was able to record a video call with Somali and Ethiopian migrants held by smugglers in Libya. The images are distressing: nearly one hundred cadaveric migrants crowded within a concrete block cell. They speak one after the other, for half an hour, of their daily hell.

Salman Jamal Said is a Somali journalist in Turkey working as a correspondent for the Universal Somali TV channel based in London. At the beginning of June he published a video on Facebook that created a wave of emotion. The video filmed by another Somali journalist stranded in Libya shows hundreds of male and female migrants locked in a room. Most are emaciated. Some show their wounds to the camera. “I’ve been here for a year. They beat me every day. I swear I do not eat anything. My body is covered with wounds,” says one of the captives in the Somali language. At the back of the room, a young man is shown lying on his stomach with a cement block tied to his back. He says he’s been there for 11 months because he could not “pay $8,000.”  “They broke my teeth and hand and now they tied this stone to my back three days ago. I am in a very bad situation,” he continues.

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