By Ashraf Abdul-Wahab.
Tripoli 16 May 2014:
Algeria has become the latest Arab state to close its embassy and consulate general in Tripoli, . . .[restrict]following an attempt by gunmen early yesterday morning to break into the residence of the ambassador in Hay Andalous.
He and embassy staff were flown during the night to Algiers.
“Following information about the existence of real and imminent threat targeting our diplomats and consular staff, it has been decided, in coordination with the Libyan authorities, to close our embassy and consulate general in Tripoli as precautionary and urgent measure,” an Algerian Foreign Ministry statement said.
This decision was, it added, “temporary and dictated by the difficult security conditions”. Algeria, it added, still supported Libyan efforts to build “the rule of law and establish peace and security throughout the Libyan territory”.
There have been unconfirmed reports that the gunmen intended to kidnap the ambassador. Algerian reports have alleged that the gunmen were linked to Al-Qaeda. It is not known, however, if they were common criminals or were politically motivated.
They reportedly fled when security forces opened fire.
Three days ago, the Jordanian Ambassador, Fawwaz Al-Eitan, was freed and flown home to Amman after being held for four weeks by kidnappers. [/restrict]