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US orders personnel out of Libya

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WASHINGTON – The United States on Monday ordered all non-essential staff to leave Libya and warned US nationals to avoid travel to the north African country as anti-government protests raged.

“The Department of State has ordered all embassy family members and non-emergency personnel to depart Libya,” a statement said. “US citizens outside of Libya are urged to defer all travel to Libya.

Protesters Monday overran several Libyan cities while regime stalwarts began defecting as the pillars of Kadhafi’s hardline rule were targeted in the capital Tripoli amid reports he had fled the country.

Cities including Benghazi in the east had fallen to demonstrators opposing Kadhafi’s 41-year-old regime after military units deserted their posts, said the Paris-based International Federation for Human Rights (IFHR).

With hundreds of protesters reportedly killed, the US State Department’s travel advice urged Americans not to visit while there was a continued threat of violence and suggested those already there hunker down.

“US citizens in Libya should minimize overall travel in-country, exercise extreme caution when traveling, and limit all travel after dark. US citizens not departing Libya should make preparations to shelter in place,” it said.

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Americans should avoid areas where demonstrations are likely to occur and should not be tempted to participate in protests, even if they appeared peaceful, the bulletin said.

“Spontaneous demonstrations, violence, and looting are possible throughout the next several days,” it said.

“Demonstrations have degenerated on several occasions into violent clashes between security forces and protesters, resulting in injuries and deaths.”

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Population of Earth to reach 9.7 billion in 2050: UN

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The world population is expected to climb to 9.7 billion in 2050 from 7.7 billion today, with the population of sub-Saharan Africa doubling, a United Nations report released Monday said.

The population could then grow to 11 billion by 2100, according to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs's "World Population Prospects" report.

The study paints a picture of a future in which a handful of countries see their populaces surge as life expectancy lengthens while the global growth rate slows amid declining fertility rates.

By 2050, more than half of the world's population growth will be concentrated in just nine countries: India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Indonesia, Egypt and the United States.

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Far-right Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini in Washington to stress Italy’s closeness to Trump administration

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Matteo Salvini, the far-right Italian deputy prime minister, spoke during a visit to Washington on Monday of his "closeness" to President Donald Trump's administration.

Salvini, whose powerful League party did well in last month's European Parliament elections, met Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and was due to meet later with Vice President Mike Pence in the White House.

Salvini, whose party is often at odds with their coalition partners, the Five Star Movement, played down his own role in cracking down on boats trying to save migrants crossing the Mediterranean from North Africa.

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Pentagon releases photos saying it proves Iran was responsible for oil tanker fire

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The Pentagon is releasing high-resolution photos showing what they say proves mines were not the only cause of the oil tanker fire that President Donald Trump has alleged was an attack.

CNN Pentagon reporter Barbara Starr said that the Pentagon released the photos after so much doubt surrounded the allegations. The legacy of the war in Iraq has prompted many to speculate that the claim of an Iranian attack is part of a ploy by the Trump government, who is eager to go to war with Iran.

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