State orders staff to leave Libya

By Jolie Lee
Federal News Radio

The State Department is ordering all non-emergency staff to leave Libya.

The department said it is gravely concerned about reports that hundreds of people have been killed or injured during anti-government protests in Libya.

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“Violent clashes between protesters and security forces continue throughout Libya, including in Tripoli. Spontaneous demonstrations, violence, and looting are possible throughout the next several days,” according to a State travel warning issued Feb. 21.

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The warning said there is no indication that Westerners are being threatened or targeted. However, State “strongly urges” Americans to avoid demonstrations – “as even peaceful ones can quickly become unruly and a foreigner could become a target of harassment, or worse.”

The Associated Press contributed to this story.