JNN 31 July 2014 Ben Ghazi : France has evacuated French and British nationals from Libya amid persisting clashes between government troops and rebelling militias in the North African country. While has already Evacuated its Diplomatic Staff from the US Embassy , and relocated them across the Border.
France’s government spokesman Stephane Le Foll announced Wednesday that French and British nationals had been evacuated from Libya without elaborating.
A French diplomatic source, however, was cited by European press outlets as saying that 40 French nationals, including the French ambassador to Libya, as well as seven British nationals have been withdrawn from the country by France’s military forces.
Meanwhile, the French Foreign Ministry further announced the “temporary” closure of the country’s embassy in Tripoli on its official website.
Earlier on Sunday, the United States also evacuated its diplomatic staff from the US embassy in Tripoli on Sunday, citing serious risks due to the continuing armed clashes among rival militants and government troops in the Libyan capital near the embassy.
The US along with its major European allies such as France, Germany and Britain have also advised their nationals residing in Libya to leave immediately.
The United Nations (UN) also announced this week its intent to pull out its staff out of Libya.
New clashes broke out at Tripoli airport on Friday between rival Libyan militant groups attempting to seize control of it. Loud explosions rang through its grounds following 13 continuous days of shelling which have severed air links between the city and the outside world.
“Many military-grade weapons remain in the hands of private individuals, including antiaircraft weapons that may be used against civilian aviation,” emphasized the travel warning.
Libya has been gripped by instability since a 2011 popular revolution in the country, which toppled its long-time dictator Muammar Gaddafi, who was later captured and killed by rebel forces.
Scores of people have been killed in Libya during fighting in recent weeks, particularly in the city of Benghazi, where a key military base fell to anti-government militants on Wednesday.