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Sudanese citizens fleeing Libya unrest arrive in Khartoum

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March 3, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – Two hundred and fifty Sudanese citizens fleeing the unrest in Libya arrived on Thursday at Khartoum airport through Tunisia.

Sudanese evacuees who fled the unrest in Libya wait for their luggage after arriving at Khartoum airport February 28, 2011(Reuters Pictures)

Meanwhile, the Sudanese government said it evacuated 2000 citizens from Libya and was accelerating efforts to bring more back home.

Sudan this week re-opened its shared borders with Libya, which remained closed for nearly eight months over political tension, and set up an emergency taskforce to facilitate the return of its citizens there, as anti-government unrest continues to cause an exodus by foreigners.

Sudan has also asked the United Kingdom to help evacuate some of its citizens in Libya.

According to an official in Sudan’s emergency evacuation committee, the evacuees include children and women and that all of them are in good condition.

The official told Sudan’s official news agency SUNA that the situation of Sudanese citizens in Libya remains good despite the violence witnessed in some towns.

Meanwhile, the spokesman of Sudan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Khalid Musa, said his country had so far evacuated 2000 Sudanese citizens from Libya, as reported by SUNA.

More Sudanese citizens are expected to arrive through Al-Salum border crossing with Egypt while others were transported to some Egyptian cities near the borders with Libya.

SUNA also reported that Sudan’s foreign minister Ali Karti held a meeting on Thursday with officials in charge of the evacuation committee.

SUNA said the minister had given orders to expedite evacuation efforts and charter a ship to transport Sudanese citizens in Libya’s eastern city of Bengazi.

The meeting also instructed the dispatch of a delegation of diplomats to the Al-Salum border crossing to assess the situation of Sudanese citizens there and bring them back safely.

The UN estimates that as many as 100,000 people have fled since anti-government protest erupted in Libya last month.

(ST)

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