South Africans to be evacuated from Libya

2011-02-24 14:29

South African citizens in Libya will be evacuated by a “relief flight”, the international relations and co-operation department said today.

“The dire circumstances of between 30 and 40 South Africans in Libya and their inability to depart has been of great concern to government,” said spokesperson Clayson Monyela in a statement.

“The government has accordingly activated the process for a relief flight to Tripoli to fetch those nationals to safety.”

Monyela said the situation in Libya has deteriorated to the extent that the evacuation of non-essential staff and dependants from the South African mission in that country “has become inevitable”.

“A core group of dedicated officials under the leadership of Ambassador Mohammed Dangor shall remain in place.”

Arrangements were being made by the SA National Defence Force, the department and the South African embassy in Tripoli, the Libyan capital.

A massive revolt has erupted in the North African country against long-time leader Muammar Gaddafi. Government forces and regime opponents have reportedly been in violent clashes, with witnesses reportedly describing events as a “civil war”.

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