Tue May 23, 2017 | 22:35
Turkey closes embassy in Libya
Mon, 02 May 2011 14:48:06 GMT
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Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu
Turkey has temporarily closed its embassy in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, due to the deteriorating security situation in the crisis-hit country.

The shutdown comes a day after attacks on the British and Italian diplomatic missions.

"Due to the change in the security situation in Libya and the great security risk it poses... our embassy has stopped functioning temporarily and has been evacuated," Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu told reporters on Monday, adding that the ambassador and his staff have already arrived in Tunisia.

The Turkish minister said it was not clear when the embassy, which was serving as an intermediary for the United States, Britain and Italy, will reopen.

According to the Turkish Foreign Ministry, Ankara's consulate in Benghazi, the opposition stronghold, remains open.

On Sunday, crowds loyal to Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi attacked British and Italian embassies in Tripoli after NATO strikes on Gaddafi's compound in Bab al-Aziziya killed his youngest son, Seif al-Arab, and three of his grandchildren, all younger than 12 years old.

Following the attack on the British Embassy, London expelled the Libyan ambassador in a retaliatory move.

Many Western countries have closed their embassies in Libya since an uprising against Gaddafi's rule began in February.

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