Jul 26, 7:56 AM EDT

US shutters embassy in Libya, evacuates staff to Tunisia as security deteriorates in Tripoli


Politics Video

Interactive
Inside Libya
Interactives
Up to 6,000 Libyans flee into Tunisia to escape fighting in capital

Malta oil worker kidnapped in Libya released after 11 days; PM says no ransom paid

US shutters embassy in Libya, evacuates staff to Tunisia as security deteriorates in Tripoli

International court appeals judges confirm that Gadhafi-era spy chief can be tried in Libya

Buy AP Photo Reprints
Multimedia
Libya Opening Doors to Tourists

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The State Department has shuttered the U.S. embassy in Libya and evacuated American staffers there as the security situation in the capital Tripoli deteriorates amid worsening clashes between rival militias.

The department said in a statement that American embassy staff left Tripoli on Saturday and traveled overland to neighboring Tunisia. Embassy operations in Tripoli will be suspended until the security situation improves, it said. Tripoli has been embroiled for weeks in inter-militia violence that has killed and wounded dozens on all sides. The fighting has been particularly intense at the city's airport.

The suspension marks the second time in a little more than three years that Washington has closed its embassy in Libya. In Feb. 2011, the embassy suspended operations amid the uprising that eventually toppled longtime leader Moammar Gadhafi.

© 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.