Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The UN leaves Tripoli

The UN international staff in Tripoli has been temporarily moved to Tunisia due to "unsafe" in the Libyan capital, as confirmed by a spokeswoman for the agency. The 12 UN international staff in Tripoli late on crossed the border with Tunisia, where "continue to monitor" the situation in Libya, said a spokeswoman for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), Stephanie Bunker.

The UN has taken this decision after violence against their buildings and some embassies, including the UK, after the bombing of Tripoli last night by NATO, which allegedly killed one son and three grandchildren leader Muammar Gaddafi. Bunker said the decision did not affect the agency's local staff.

United Nations international personnel sent to Tripoli last month after the head of OCHA, Valerie Amos has reached an agreement with the Libyan Government on a presence for humanitarian assistance. Bunker noted that under the agreement reached by Amos, the Libyan Government had promised to protect the UN staff.

The agency also has international staff in Benghazi, the main town held by rebels in eastern Libya. They were not affected by the decision, said Bunker.

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