TRIPOLI, Feb. 2 (Xinhua) -- The UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) on Friday expressed its regret over the displaced people of Tawergha being barred from returning home.
"The UN Support Mission in Libya deeply regrets denying Tawerghans and their families from returning to their homes by some hardliners," the mission said in a statement.
"The mission condemns the threats they have faced, and strongly criticizes the attempts to extort them financially for a safe return to their homes," it added.
The UNSMIL also called for reasonably implementing relevant agreements to "secure the return of the displaced people and to financially compensate those affected."
The return of Tawerghans, which was scheduled on Thursday, was halted after armed groups from nearby Misurata District denied them entry into the town.
A day earlier, the city of Misurata demanded the postponement of the return of the internally displaced people from Tawergha.
The city slammed the government's unilateral announcement of the return date as a move without fully implementing a previous UN-sponsored agreement, particularly in terms of "reconciliation, extradition, taking security measures and compensation for all parties."
During the 2011 uprising, some residents of Tawergha allied with the forces of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi against the rebels of the nearby city of Misurata.
After Gaddafi's regime was toppled, those residents, accused by Misurata of actively participating in the fighting against them, fled their homes to other cities in Libya. Since then, they have been internally displaced.