Travel Warning – Libya

by Wayne Ghesquiere on March 21, 2011

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada advises against all travel to Libya due to the unpredictable security situation, and the ongoing operations in the country. Canadians in Libya are urged to leave the country now by commercial means if it is safe to do so. On March 17, the United Nations (UN) passed a resolution, authorizing military action by international forces in order to protect civilian populations. This could result in military strikes anywhere in Libya at any time. Widespread protests and anti-government demonstrations continue and violent clashes between Libyan security forces and demonstrators are ongoing across the country, including in Tripoli. Large numbers of casualties have been reported. Given the volatile security situation, the Canadian Embassy in Tripoli has suspended operations until further notice. Canadian officials have left the country. Canadians in Libya and relatives in Canada seeking information should contact the Emergency Operations Centre in Ottawa at (00-1) 613-996-8885. Transportation by commercial means out of Libya is available but limited. Canadians are advised to avoid travelling after dark. Air transportation: Following the UN resolution, Libyan airspace is closed to all traffic and all flights out of Libya are suspended. Maritime transportation: We are unaware of any boats scheduled to leave from any ports in Libya at this time. Land transportation: Roads to the Tunisian and Egyptian land borders are open. Violent incidents along these roads have been reported. Canadians are urged to exercise extreme caution when travelling on these roads. These roads may close on short notice. Border Areas Canadians face hightened risks at the border areas with Niger, Chad, Sudan and Algeria due to the presence of armed groups and the threat of banditry. Border areas may open and close without warning – however, the majority of the time, they tend to remain closed. OFFICIAL REGISTRATION RECOMMENDATION: We offer a registration service for all Canadians travelling or living abroad. This service is provided so that we can contact and assist you in an emergency abroad, such as a natural disaster or civil unrest, or inform you of a family emergency at home. Registration can be done on-line or by contacting a Canadian government office abroad. For more information, see our FAQs on Registration of Canadians Abroad. For more information, please see the Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada page at www.travel.gc.ca.

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