The United Nations Security Council on Thursday slapped sanctions on six leaders of human trafficking networks operating in Libya, a first for the world body, diplomats said.
The process moved ahead when Russia "lifted its hold placed on the Dutch proposal" to include the six people on the sanctions blacklist, a diplomat said, adding that the sanctions take effect immediately.
"Last fall, images of migrants being sold as slaves in Libya shocked our conscience, and the Security Council vowed to take action," said the US envoy to the UN, Nikki Haley.
"Today's sanctions send a strong message that the international community is united in seeking accountability for perpetrators of human trafficking and smuggling. There is no place in our world for such abuses of human rights and human dignity."