China evacuates 29,000 nationals from Libya

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Nearly 29,000 Chinese have been evacuated from riot-torn Libya during China's largest-ever evacuation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement Monday.

More than 30,000 Chinese citizens had been working in the north African state when the anti-regime protests broke out.

As of 10 a.m. Monday, about 2,500 Chinese had been flown back to China, while 23,000 had been temporarily resettled in third countries, and 3,400 were on their way to third countries, said the statement.

There were about 10,000 Chinese evacuees on the Greek island of Crete, 1,600 in Malta, 11,000 on the Tunisian island of Djerba, and 400 in Khartoum of Sudan and in Dubai of the United Arab Emirates.

Two foreign ocean liners chartered by the Chinese government are shipping about 2,800 Chinese evacuees to Malta and another Chinese vessel is heading for Crete with about 600 Chinese on board, it said.

The Chinese embassy in Libya and working groups from Beijing are arranging Chinese nationals to leave Libya by road for Tunisia.

The foreign passenger planes chartered by the Chinese government are also flying Chinese evacuees from Libya to Khartoum or Dubai, it said, without giving the details.

Chinese airlines have also been operating more chartered planes to bring home Chinese nationals from Tunisia, Malta and Greece, said the statement.

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