News / Africa

Foreigners Flee Libya Turmoil

Passengers pack Tripoli's International airport as they try to catch flights leaving Libya. European countries are sending planes and ferries to Libya to evacuate their citizens, February 22, 2011
Passengers pack Tripoli's International airport as they try to catch flights leaving Libya. European countries are sending planes and ferries to Libya to evacuate their citizens, February 22, 2011

Thousands of foreigners have successfully been evacuated from Libya, while others are crowding ports and airports in efforts to leave the country.

Turkey says it has evacuated more than 7,000 of its citizens.  Many of the evacuees arrived at the Turkish port of Marmaris on Thursday.

Also Thursday, ferries carrying at least 4,000 Chinese evacuees arrived at the Greek island of Crete.

Meanwhile, Britain is debating whether its military will be needed to move out at least 170 oil workers and their colleagues who are stranded in Libya.

Canada and Britain plan Thursday to send planes to Libya's capital, Tripoli, as part of evacuation efforts.

Poor weather forced a U.S.-chartered ferry to remain in port overnight in Tripoli, delaying efforts to evacuate Americans to Malta.

Thousands of other people are traveling overland to neighboring Egypt and Tunisia to escape the chaos that has erupted from an opposition revolt and a government crackdown.

South Asian nations also prepared evacuation plans for tens of thousands of their citizens working in Libya, many as low-paid laborers on construction sites.

Video clip: Libya evacuations



The French News Agency (AFP) quotes officials from India as saying a passenger ferry that can carry 1,200 is expected to arrive in Libya on Sunday.  India has an estimated 18,00 citizens in the country.

Bangladeshi Foreign Secretary Mijarul Quayes said Wednesday that Dhaka is considering all options for repatriating up to 60,000 Bangladeshis from Libya.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

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