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Libya Travel Update (February 24, 2011)

Libya Travel Update

February 24, 2011

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens against travel to Libya and recommends that those U.S. citizens in Libya depart, due to the potential for ongoing unrest.  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.  The Department of State has ordered all Embassy family members and non-emergency personnel to depart Libya.   U.S. citizens who remain in Libya despite this Travel Warning should minimize overall travel in-country, exercise extreme caution when traveling, and limit all travel after dark.  This Travel Warning supersedes the Travel Warning dated February 21, 2011.

U.S. citizens should exercise extreme caution, avoid areas where demonstrations are likely to occur such as government offices and public squares, and leave an area immediately if a demonstration begins.  Demonstrations have degenerated on several occasions into violent clashes between security forces and protesters, resulting in injuries and deaths.  The U.S. Department of State strongly urges U.S. citizens to avoid all demonstrations, as even peaceful ones can quickly become unruly and a foreigner could become a target of harassment, or worse.  While demonstrations have not been directed toward Westerners, U.S. citizens are urged to remain alert to local security developments and to be vigilant regarding their personal security.  U.S. citizens should take the appropriate steps to bolster their personal security.  Again, there is no indication that Westerners are being threatened or targeted at this time.

Unannounced security checkpoints and road and airport closures may occur throughout Libya, changing traffic patterns and flight availability without notice.  Due to ongoing internet and telephone service interruptions in Libya, U.S. citizens who require assistance in departing Libya should contact the U.S. State Department at 1-202-501-4444 or via email at LibyaEmergencyUSC@state.gov