Tripoli is Libya’s capital city, home to over 3 million people. Colonel Muammar Gaddafi became the country’s leader in 1969, leading to violent conflicts and civil war. Officials advise tourists to avoid Libya at all costs, as the risk to international visitors is extremely high. Violent crime is on the rise in Tripoli, with many being attacked for their skin color, ethnic origin, gender, or religion. In 2015, militants attacked a hotel in Tripoli, killing at least nine foreigners.
Also expect extensive corruption in Libya. Undocumented foreign nationals are here at risk of exploitation, arbitrary and indefinite detention, as well as beatings, sometimes amounting to torture. There have been thousands of cases of arbitrary arrests and armed groups often exercise law enforcement duties as they see fit. Libyan prisons are overcrowded and there have been allegations of unlawful killings, torture, sexual violence, and forced labor in the prisons.
Transport & Taxis Risk: HIGH
The situation in Tripoli continues to be unstable, so traveling through the city is dangerous. You could encounter violent terrorists or thieves at any point. Also, driving standards are poor here with factors that complicate traffic additionally, like the wind-blown sand that reduces visibility.
Scams & Pickpocket Risk: HIGH
Many scammers operate in the city, lingering around ATM’s to steal cash. Foreigners are targeted more than locals. Anyone traveling around Tripoli must keep their valuables in a safe space and remain alert at all times.
Terrorism Risk: HIGH
Extremist groups, including Daesh, regularly carry out attacks in Tripoli. Daesh claimed responsibility for a terrorist attack on the High National Election Commission in Tripoli on 2 May 2018, in which at least 13 people were killed and many injured, and further attacks on the National Oil Corporation in central Tripoli on 10 September 2018, in which at least 2 people were killed, and on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tripoli on 25 December 2018, which killed at least two people. In August 2019, a car bomb explosion in the eastern city of Benghazi killed five, including three foreign nationals.