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February 24th, 2011
05:15 PM ET

Countries scramble to get citizens out of Libya

CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) - Governments around the world are making a run to get their citizens out of volatile Libya. Here is a country-by-country breakdown:

UNITED STATES

The Department of State recommended Thursday that any U.S. citizens in Libya "depart immediately due to the potential for ongoing unrest."

It noted that "violent clashes between protesters and security forces continue throughout Libya, including in Tripoli" and warned that "spontaneous demonstrations, violence, and looting are possible throughout the next several days."

The department ordered all Embassy family members and non-emergency personnel to leave the country.

There were roughly 6,000 Americans in Libya.

A ferry chartered by the United States to evacuate citizens from Libya is expected to depart within the "next several hours," State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Thursday afternoon. Crowley told reporters the exact timing of the ship's departure depends on the weather.

A total of 285 people are safely on board, Crowley said. The vessel can hold up to 575 people.

The ship is carrying 167 U.S. citizens, including 40 nonessential embassy staff and family, as well as 118 third-country nationals.

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soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Bonnie Monahan

    I am just praying for all the people in the middle east. The young women you had on tonight was riveting and brought me to tears! No one should have to live in such fear and she is just one of millions, Yes freedom isn't free it is priceless. We are all worth something. To have these dictators treat people with such disregard is appalling but it is the sin nature of man rearing its ugly head. May God lift you up and we are praying for you all.

    February 24, 2011 at 11:29 pm |
  2. Pierre Theuma

    How is it that the British/Irish evacuated their citizens from Tripoli airport yet the US did not? The Maltese ferry /catamaran can only sail in very calm waters – not a common event in the Mediterranean in February.The Maltese themselves got their citizens out using a commercial aircraft. The pilots volunteered to go to Tripoli, were denied landing rights by the Libyan government, yet they defied the orders and landed anyway. They boarded the majority of Maltese citizens and took off only to realize that some people were missed. The brave pilots turned the aircraft around, and, defying the Libyan government yet again, landed a second time and gathered the rest of the citizens.They are safe in Malta today.
    So, a tiny country of less than 500,000 people can dare teeh might of the Libyan dictatorship to save its citizens, and the US is sitting waiting for the weather to break??? Wake up US government and find your nuts!

    February 24, 2011 at 10:58 pm |
  3. Deborah

    There are alot of things about the non-response position Pres Obama is taking in Libya ( vs Egypt ) and maybe for reasonable securities.
    But didn't we send a military ship to rescue NOT ONLY US citizens but anyone who needed to get out of Lebanon during the 6 day war with Israel????
    What the HECK????
    SEND A SHIP IT SHOULD HAVE LEFT PORT DAYS AGO IN PURSUIT OF OUR AMERICAN and ALL of our fellow HUMAN FAMILY.
    WE DO MORE FOR EARTHQUAKES and that is GREAT but after the quake
    things settle–THIS IS GENOCIDE. sorry for the caps and the length, listening to that poor brave soul speaking to Anderson is HEARTBREAKING

    February 24, 2011 at 10:42 pm |
  4. Cathy Ross

    While I am very concerned for the people of Libya I also understand what a difficult decision this is for our Pres and country. Does the US once again have to step up? I can't help but wonder why do we always have to take that first step. Where is France, Canada, Germany someone, anybody????

    February 24, 2011 at 10:34 pm |
  5. aliousalam

    They would find out that they can't govern without the consent of the big business and the dictate of Western governments . They would wake up to the reality that the policies they carry out will never be their own desire, but that of the dictators, puppet masters and neo colonialist who rule over them.

    February 24, 2011 at 9:45 pm |
  6. aliousalam

    A country were we have an embassy, where our major industries operate and earn billions, a country that we boasted of many times; that is the country that we are first to take revenge from. Forget all other countries now silently killing and that about which we are speaking from the two sides of our mouth.
    Forget all that, focus on pushing our friend down when they are down already.
    Do you hear yourself sometimes? You and the rest of the pundits on your shows are just like the friends of good days. Each want to be the person who said the worst thing on any leader.

    You and all others on your show forget that this crisis that is consuming the rest of the world was manufactured in wall street. Forget that, blame dictatorship, the same dictators we have our major industries bribing them and evading tax in those countries for larger profits and higher bonuses.

    You forget, Anderson, that for every dictator that the third world has, we, in America, have at least 1000 big companies ruling and pauperizing the people of that country with him.

    You forget that the government of such countries only last as long as big companies and the western governments want them to last.

    I can say one thing: The Arabs are doing to themselves what the trillions dollar a months military budget of America and Its allies hasn't done in decades of warfare.

    They will wake up the day after the revolution. They would find out that they can't govern without the consent of the big business and that dictate to the western governments . They would wake up to the reality that the policies they carry out will never be their own desire, but that of the dictators, puppet masters and neo colonialist who rule over them.

    February 24, 2011 at 9:40 pm |
  7. Annie Kate

    What about our "essential" embassy folks? Will we be bringing them out and home or at least in a safer place nearby? Looking back at the Iran hostage situation we know that our embassy folks cannot truly be safe left in the country. I hope we take safety precautions for them as well.

    February 24, 2011 at 9:34 pm |