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MSF responds to catastrophic flooding in Libya

11 Oct 23

MSF responds to catastrophic flooding in Libya

Views of Derna, east of Libya, as the MSF team arrives in the field for the assessment Caption
Views of Derna, east of Libya, as the MSF team arrives in the field for the assessment

18 September 2023

Since flooding devastated eastern Libya last week, at least 4,000 people have died and almost 8,000 are still missing. 

Derna, a port city in eastern Libya, was the worst hit after two dams burst killing thousands. About 30,000 people—one-third of its population—were displaced by the flooding 

Below is a voice note from Manoelle Carton, MSF Medical Coordinator for Libya, with her assessment on the current situation. 

What is MSF doing?

  • At the time of the disaster, Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders (MSF) did not run any projects in the areas of Libya affected by the floods. However, we have now deployed an emergency team to Derna and dispatched critical medical supplies.
  • The first emergency team – made up of expert medical and logistical staff – reached Derna on Thursday 14 September to begin assessing the humanitarian and medical needs. Conditions are challenging and the city has been split in two, between east and west, by the torrent of floodwaters.
  • Hospitals and healthcare facilities have been damaged and need urgent restoration and support. MSF is now supporting two healthcare centres in the city, holding consultations mainly for non-communicable diseases. We are also preparing to run mobile clinics for people displaced by the disaster. Throughout our response, providing mental health care for survivors and volunteers will be a priority.
  • We are in close contact with the Libyan Red Crescent and have already donated urgently needed items to help treat the wounded. This includes 450 medical and casualty care kits comprised of essential supplies such as wound dressings, disinfectants, antibiotics, gloves and masks. We have also supplied 400 body bags for the large number of deceased.
  • We are assessing the water and sanitation situation in Derna. Given the damage to water supply and sewage networks, there is a risk of water-borne diseases.


How can I help MSF in Libya?

Right now, our teams are in Derna, Libya, assessing the medical needs caused by the floods and preparing a response.

This is only possible because of donations from people like you.

By giving to our general funds today, you will be helping ensure we can respond to emergencies around the world.

Please donate today to support our emergency teams.