UN says thousands detained in Libya face 'appalling' abuses

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The United Nations says Libyan militias, including some affiliated with authorities, are holding thousands of prisoners in prolonged arbitrary and unlawful detention that includes torture.

In a report released on Tuesday, the U.N. says men, women and children across the country have been rounded up based on "tribal or family links and perceived political affiliations," and held with "little or no recourse to judicial remedy or reparations," while the armed groups roam free with impunity.

U.N.'s High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein says "the sheer horror and arbitrariness of such detentions" hits both victims and families, adding that "violations and abuses need to stop - and those responsible for such crimes should be held fully to account."

Libya has been in chaos since its 2011 popular uprising.