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Taiwan issues highest-level travel warning for Libya

2011/02/21 16:35:17

Taipei, Feb. 21 (CNA) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) onMonday advised Taiwan citizens not to travel to Libya for the timebeing, as anti-government protests continued to spread in the NorthAfrican country.

The MOFA issued a red travel warning -- the highest in itsfour-color travel advisory system -- after large-scale clashesbetween security forces and demonstrators in the eastern Libyan cityof Benghazi led to heavy casualties over the weekend and violencespread to urban areas in western Libya.

At the moment, only the surrounding areas of Tripoli, the Libyancapital, remain relatively stable and quiet, the ministry said in astatement.

The Libyan government has cut off mobile phone and Internetservices, limiting international communications mainly to phone callsvia fixed lines, according to the MOFA.

Against this backdrop, the MOFA said, Taiwanese citizens areadvised against travel to that country for time being.

Citizens who are already in Libya for business or travel shouldavoid those areas where the demonstrations are being held and shouldclosely follow the news for reports on the political developmentsthere, the MOFA advised.

Taiwan citizens in Libya who encounter problems or need emergencyhelp should contact Taiwan's representative office in Tripoli, theMOFA added.

Meanwhile, the ministry issued a yellow travel alert -- itssecond lowest level -- for the East African state of Djibouti where apolice officer was killed last Friday in clashes between lawenforcement officers and anti-government demonstrators.

The yellow-level warning advises tourists to travel with cautionand reconsider their itinerary.

Taiwanese citizens on pleasure or business trips in Djiboutishould contact Taiwan's representative office in Saudi Arabia if theyneed help, the ministry said.

(By Emmanuelle Tzeng and Sofia Wu)
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