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Japan closes embassy in Libya temporarily

Japan's Foreign Ministry has temporarily closed its embassy in the Libyan capital of Tripoli due to worsening security.

The ministry evacuated the ambassador and embassy staff from the country and closed the embassy on Monday. Some of the staff will be stationed in Cairo, the capital of neighboring Egypt, to possibly engage in duties there.

The ministry earlier issued the highest-level travel warning for Libya, urging Japanese nationals to evacuate immediately.

Fighting between militant groups has continued over the past week around Tripoli's international airport and surrounding residential areas. Libyan health authorities report that 47 people have been killed. The control tower and most of the aircraft at the airport have been destroyed.

Jul. 22, 2014 - Updated 05:38 UTC