Russian diplomats will return to Libya only after actual security measures are taken - official

Russian Embassy staff will return to Libya only after the Libyan authorities confirm their ability to ensure the security of Russia's diplomatic mission in the country "by deeds", Russian Ambassador to Libya Ivan Molotkov said.

Russian Embassy staff will return to Libya only after the Libyan authorities confirm their ability to ensure the security of Russia's diplomatic mission in the country "by deeds", Russian Ambassador to Libya Ivan Molotkov said.

"It will happen when the authorities confirm by deeds that they are capable of maintaining our security," he told Interfax.

Moscow will be able to see that Libyans are actually capable of maintaining the embassy's security, "when this incident is investigated, when the persons who organized and masterminded it are identified, and when our diplomatic mission is placed under reliable and permanent guard by a contingent able to respond to a similar attack, should it be staged once again, instead of a couple of policemen who guarded the mission previously," he said.

"We have no plans to completely shut down the embassy because there is no reason to break relations with this country entirely. But it is not safe there today," Molotkov said.

Four employees of the Russian Embassy in Tripoli have stayed in Tunisia, and they will be ready to return to Libya as soon as they feel that the situation there has begun to stabilize, he said.

Molotkov said that Russian diplomats should return to Libya in the "foreseeable future", declining, however, to offer any exact timeframe.

"It is difficult to say. I do not want to predict anything. Anyway, we are committed to sorting out this issue as soon as possible," he said.

"I cannot give you any tentative time limits, but it will happen in the foreseeable future," he added.

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