By Ilya Arkhipov & Henry Meyer – Oct 3, 2013 | Bloomberg
Russian embassy officials and their families crossed safely into Tunisia today, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on its website. All but a handful of senior diplomats who will remain in Tunisia to maintain ties with Tripoli will return to Moscow tomorrow, the ministry said.
The decision was taken after the North African nation’s authorities told the Russian ambassador that Libya wasn’t “currently able to guarantee the protection and security of the Russian embassy and recommends its staff to leave the diplomatic mission,” ministry’s spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said.
The attack came in revenge for the killing of a Libyan officer by a Russian woman now under arrest, according to the ministry.
Russia lost billions of dollars in arms and civilian contracts after the overthrow in 2011 of Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi. It has resumed cooperation with the post-Qaddafi government by offering to train military personnel and to develop energy ties.