Aid groups: France drops plan to send ships to Libyan navy

PARIS (AP) — Aid groups say the French government has decided against sending six boats to Libya’s navy, amid concerns that they would be used to take migrants to detention centers known for widespread abuses.

Eight advocacy organizations sued the government earlier this year, saying the boat donation would violate the European embargo on Libya and make France complicit in abuse.

Lola Schulmann of Amnesty International’s France branch told The Associated Press that the aid groups’ legal team received a notice from the French Defense Ministry saying it “decided not to deliver the ships.” She called it a “victory,” though the reason for the decision was unclear.

Ministry officials didn’t immediately comment.

Europe has relied heavily on the Libyan coast guard to intercept migrants. Disease is also widespread in the holding centers.