News / Middle East

Libya Violence Forces Countries to Evacuate Workers, Nationals

Fighters from the Benghazi Shura Council, which includes former rebels and militants from al-Qaida-linked Ansar al-Sharia, gesture on top of a tank next to the camp of the special forces in Benghazi, Libya, July 30, 2014.
Fighters from the Benghazi Shura Council, which includes former rebels and militants from al-Qaida-linked Ansar al-Sharia, gesture on top of a tank next to the camp of the special forces in Benghazi, Libya, July 30, 2014.
VOA News

Continued fighting between rival militia factions in Libya has prompted several countries to evacuate workers and urge nationals to leave the country.

On Wednesday, China evacuated several hundred workers from Libya and is taking them by ship to Malta, the head of the Malta Civil Service, Mario Cutajar, said.

Cutajar said the Maltese government was arranging temporary accommodations for the workers and was preparing for the eventuality of a bigger evacuation from the North African country if the unrest there continues to grow.

Cutajar is heading a crisis center to cater for the fallout from the unrest in Libya.

Also, China has urged all its nationals to leave Libya.

About 1,000 Chinese citizens have left since May, but about 1,100 remain, China's state-run Xinhua news agency said, citing Chinese Embassy official Yan Jianqun.

Many Chinese have also driven out to Tunisia, Yan said.

French evacuates nationals

Earlier on Wednesday, French nationals were evacuated from Tripoli, as well, amid concerns over increased violence in the country. 

Video released by the French government showed people getting into boats before boarding French frigate the Montcalm at sea.

The evacuation came after heavy gunfire between warring militias prevented firefighters from battling a massive inferno in Libya's capital on Tuesday. 

The fighting has taken place despite calls for a cease-fire to end the worst violence in the capital since the country's 2011 civil war.

Meanwhile, the Philippines renewed calls for thousands of its nationals to leave Libya on Thursday after a Filipina nurse was abducted and gang-raped on Wednesday, and a Filipino construction worker was beheaded earlier in July.

The foreign department said all 13,000 Filipinos there were to be repatriated as clashes between rival militias threaten to tear the country apart three years after Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi was toppled.

The department said a consular team has stayed behind in Tripoli despite the precarious security situation to coordinate the evacuation of Filipinos by land to Tunisia and Egypt where they will eventually be flown home.

It has also barred its nationals from traveling to Libya.

On Wednesday, the Philippines also said it had chartered a ship to take up to 1,000 Filipinos to Malta.

Spain, U.S.

On Tuesday, a Spanish military plane had evacuated 60 people from Libya, the Spanish Foreign Ministry said in a statement. 

On Monday, the United States said its ambassador to Libya, who was evacuated on Saturday, would be based temporarily in Malta.

The island played a pivotal role in the evacuation of thousands of workers during the uprising against Moammar Gadhafi in 2011, when countries including China, the Philippines and India chartered ships to transport workers there before they returned to their home countries.

A British warship also used Malta as a base for crossings to Libya to evacuate Europeans.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters, AFP and AP.

You May Like

Amnesty: EU Failing Migrants, Refugees

Rights group says migrants, refugees subject to detention, extortion, beatings More

From South Africa to Vietnam, Cyclists Deliver Message Against Rhino Horns

Appalled by poaching they saw firsthand, sisters embark on tour to raise awareness in countries where rhino horn products are in demand More

Uber Wants Johannesburg Police Protection

Request follows recent protests outside ride-hailing service's Johannesburg office More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Godwin from: Nigeria
July 31, 2014 11:02 AM
The West instigated the trouble in the islamist countries in what it called the Arab Spring. The west agreed with the perpetrators of that evil and tactfully and tacitly endorsed a change of government by mob action, bringing on hooligans and disproportionately showing them the limelight in taste of power. It was good for the West to establish no fly zone to unseat enemy regimes, and France was on ground quick enough to clean up the function.

Soon after, Benghazi has become another Swath Valley in Pakistan where the Taliban has headquartered its fighters with which it destabilizes the region. Benghazi has become another terrorist headquarters which wants to remove every gain of democratic processes and return the region to centuries of stone age underdevelopment. With al qaida in the Maghreb, Benghazi has become an intuition for terrorism in Africa helping splinter groups like Al Shabab in Somalia and boko haram in Nigeria to grow into regional monsters that may become difficult to contain.

by: Sam from: Accra
July 31, 2014 6:43 AM
I thought they eliminated Gaddafi to take the Libyan oil? Why are they now leaving? Thy should stay and drill out all the oil.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Getting it Done Beyond a Nuclear Deali
X
July 07, 2015 12:02 PM
If a nuclear deal is reached between Iran and world powers in Vienna, it will be a highly technical road map to be used to monitor nuclear activity in Iran for years to come to ensure Tehran does not make nuclear weapons. Equally as complicated will be dismantling international sanctions that were originally intended to be ironclad. VOA’s Heather Murdock talks to experts about the key challenges any deal will present.
Video

Video Getting it Done Beyond a Nuclear Deal

If a nuclear deal is reached between Iran and world powers in Vienna, it will be a highly technical road map to be used to monitor nuclear activity in Iran for years to come to ensure Tehran does not make nuclear weapons. Equally as complicated will be dismantling international sanctions that were originally intended to be ironclad. VOA’s Heather Murdock talks to experts about the key challenges any deal will present.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.

VOA Blogs