U.S. Orders Diplomats Out of Lebannon

Sep 6, 2013 8:41 AM

The State Department is ordering nonessential U.S. diplomats to leave Lebanon due to security concerns as the Obama administration and Congress debate military strikes on neighboring Syria.
In a new travel warning for Lebanon issued early Friday, the department said it had instructed nonessential staffers to leave Beirut and urged private American citizens to depart Lebanon.
The step had been under consideration since last week when President Barack Obama said he was contemplating military action against the Syrian government for its alleged chemical weapons attack last month that the administration said killed more than 1,400 people near Damascus.
The U.S. closed 19 embassies and consulates across Africa and the Middle East last month for more than a week after a terrorist threat.
Meanwhile, President Barack Obama is using the last day of the G-20 economic summit in Russia to try to scrounge up foreign support for armed action. He's had little public success so far. And in Syria, state TV is reporting that the Syrian government is offering the equivalent of $2,800 to anyone who turns in a foreign fighter.


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