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Turkish foreign ministry says 7,062 Turks evacuated from Libya so far

24 February 2011 [15:35] - TODAY.AZ
Turkish ministry of foreign affairs said on Thursday that 7,062 Turkish nationals had been evacuated from Libya via air and sea route since February 19.
Selcuk Unal, spokesperson for the Turkish foreign ministry, said that 4,034 citizens had been brought back to Turkey via airway while 3,028 people had returned to the country via sea route since last Saturday due to the ongoing turmoil in Libya.

Noting that several firms operating in Libya had been permitted to conduct charter flights, Unal said 7 planes would travel from Tripoli, Alexandria (Egypt) and Djerba (Tunisia) to Istanbul on Thursday.

The spokesperson noted that 21 countries had asked for Turkey's support for the evacuation of their citizens from Libya, however, priority was given to transfer of Turkish nationals.

 Unal also said that there had been 88 foreigners on board the "Orhan Gazi-1" and "Osman Gazi-1" ferries that had arrived in Turkey from Libya on Wednesday night.

 Moreover, Turkey's national air carrier Turkish Airlines (THY) announced that it had conducted 17 flights between February 19-23 to bring back the Turkish citizens trapped in the chaos in Libya.

A statement from THY's press office said Thursday that a total of 3,874 people had been carried back to homeland via flights conducted from Tripoli, Benghazi, Tunisia and Alexandria airports.

Week-long unrest left hundreds of people dead in Libya as people took to the streets to demonstrate against Muammar Gaddafi's 42-year reign.

A Turkish worker, who had been working at a construction site near Libya's capital Tripoli, was also killed during the clashes in the north African country.

/Anadolu Agency/

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