Russia Says Embassy Staff In Libya Evacuated After Attack

The decision to evacuate staff was taken after Libyan Foreign Minister Mohammed Abdelaziz visited the embassy. The ministry said he had told the Russian ambassador that Libya was “not in a state to guarantee the security of the Russian embassy and recommended his employees leave the diplomatic mission”. The statement said that staff and their families had taken refuge in safe rooms during the attack. They were evacuated to Tunisia on Thursday and expected to return to Russia on Friday. The attack demonstrated the volatility in oil-producing Libya two years after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi, and the problems faced by his former ally Russia as it tries to put billions of dollars’ worth of energy and arms deals back on track. The Foreign Ministry and the Kremlin were keen to play down political angles of the attack, citing the murder as the cause. The Russian woman, who also wounded the officer’s mother, had been arrested, the statement said. Diplomatic sources in Libya said security guards fired shots to disperse a group of about 60 people who tried to storm the embassy on Wednesday. Russian agencies said the gunmen arrived in two vehicles before opening fire. The statement sought to underline cooperation by the two countries to reestablish Russia’s full diplomatic presence in Libya and reduce any long-term impact. CLAN DIVISIONS Clan and tribal rivalries, as well as Islamist groups, have flourished in the absence of strong central government in Libya. Security services have struggled to maintain order.

Russia and the Caribbean

So far, Jamaica is the only Caricom nation actively courting Russian tourists, receiving a twice weekly service from Moscow into Montego Bay. However, Barbados, the Bahamas and some Eastern Caribbean nations have also begun to consider the possibilities, although in some cases runway extensions may be required to facilitate the high take-off weight of long east bound flights. The second significant change in the Russian presence in the region has been the dramatic improvement is Russias relationship with Cuba. Earlier this year the Russian Prime Minister, Dmitry Medvedev, signed ten wide ranging agreements significantly strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries, effectively reversing its withdrawal following the fall of the Soviet Union. The agreements include a formula to resolve finally in 2014 the US$25 billion of Soviet-era Cuban debt that Russia holds; a preferential tariff arrangement on trade with Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan; and collaboration in a wide range of other areas of joint scientific, environmental, aviation and informatics interest. Re-engagement has also resulted in a rapid increase in trade, discussions on joint ventures in industry, technology and tourism, and in military co-operation, publicly demonstrated by the recent call in Havana by a naval task force led by the cruiser Moskva. At the same time there has been a growth in interest in improved relations with the Anglophone Caribbean. Russia has cancelled the remaining debt owed by Guyana, is offering police training and scholarships and through RUSALs majority shareholding in the Bauxite Company of Guyana (BCGI) is looking to increase its local involvement. Russian companies are also increasing their bauxite related investment in Jamaica with Rusal, which controls 65 per cent of Jamaica’s alumina capacity and operates three of the island’s four refineries, investing US$100m in a coal-fired electricity generating plant, with the objective of reducing its energy costs and reopening idle plants in 2016. There is also interest in investing in the tourism sector In the Eastern Caribbean there has been a rapid growth in interest in investment in tourism to take advantage of citizenship schemes being introduced there. In St Kitts for instance, where government has removed visa requirements for Russians, a recently announced US$50m investment is partly backed by a Canadian agency that promotes to wealthy Russians and others, locations where investment for citizenship is possible.

Russia 2018: ‘We have nothing to hide’ in World Cup bid investigation

for arms trafficking. News of Garcia’s investigation came ahead of FIFA’s executive committee in Zurich on Thursday and Friday where it will discuss the possibility of moving the 2022 tournament from the usual June and July slot to December. “I will conduct interviews in various places and I hope that those who have some information, even if they are not obliged to give me some, will agree to talk to me,” Garcia told France Football magazine. “My goal is to submit a report that covers the World Cup bidding and awarding process.” Read: FIFA puts heat on Qatar Mark Pieth, who will leave his post as chairman of the Independent Governance Committee at the end of the year, said Garcia’s task isn’t easy. “He’s in a very awkward situation,” Pieth told CNN. “He has no police powers. He can’t just walk into an office in Dubai and say, ‘I want these files and I want all your hard disks.’ “He has to use the techniques of an international investigator and so the big question is, even if there’s evidence around, will he find it? We don’t know. What I can do is make sure he gets the manpower and he gets the resources, the money, to run this.” FIFA’s decision to award Qatar the 2022 tournament has been particularly criticized, with many suggesting the oppressive heat in the Gulf state makes staging the World Cup there impractical and dangerous. Pieth himself said he had “serious doubts” about the procedure used to give Qatar the event. Moving the competition from the northern hemisphere summer to winter could present a number of problems to the sport’s major leagues and major broadcasters.