Russia evacuates Libyan embassy staff to Tunisia
A picture taken on outside the Russian embassy in Tripoli shows a car that was destroyed during an attack. Russia has evacuated all embassy staff from Libya. (Image credit: AFP)
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Russia has evacuated its entire embassy staff and their families from Libya to Tunisia on Thursday following an attack on its mission in Tripoli late Wednesday.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said the decision has been taken after Libya’s foreign minister said his authorities will not be able to guarantee the staff’s safety after Wednesday’s attack, Reuters agency reported.
He added that the embassy’s staff will be flown to Russia on Friday.
Dozens of angry protesters tried to storm the Russian embassy in Tripoli on Wednesday after reports that a Russian woman had killed a Libyan army officer, witnesses said.
One of the attackers was killed by the gunfire, and four more were wounded, Libyan officials told the Associated Press.
The attackers took down the Russian flag that was hanging from the balcony of one of the buildings, said an official who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The attack comes two days after conflicting reports emerged about the circumstances of the murder of an army officer in the Souk Juma district of Tripoli, according to AFP.
Some sources said a Russian woman had killed the officer for his role in the 2011 revolt against former leader Muammar Qaddafi’s regime. Others said the woman was the wife of the slain man and that the motive for the killing was a marital dispute.