Monday, February 21, 2011

LIVE BLOG - Al Jazeera English - Communications Shutdown

6:52pm: The Libyan ambassador to the United Kingdom has resigned, alongside other embassy staff. They have joined demonstrators, Al Jazeera's correspondent reported.
6:46pm: Al Jazeera, alonside specialist technical investigators, have pinpointed the source of its signal blockage to a Libyan intelligence agency building, south of the capital Tripoli. The network's website has also been blocked in the country, with Libyan users getting the message: "File does not exist" when they try to access it.
A spokesman for Al Jazeera said:
The media should be able to operate freely, so all interference with our work and our broadcast signal should cease forthwith.
6:42pm: Senior diplomatic sources tell Al Jazeera - on condition of confidentiality - that phones are being monitored and text messages jammed.  Nearly all embassies are evacuating non-essential staff, and all have been ordered by Libya's foreign ministry to close immediately - and to remain closed until Sunday. 
6:38pm: Venezuelan officials deny Gaddafi is on his way there.
6:34pm: Reuters reports British foreign secretary William Hague says Gaddafi "may be on his way to Venezuela". On the sidelines of the EU crisis talks, he reportedly said:
You asked me earlier about whether Colonel Gaddafi is in Venezuela - I have no information that says he is, but I have seen some information that suggests he is on his way there at the moment.
6:30pm: Planes of the Libyan Air Force reportedly opening fire on protesters in central Tripoli. No way to confirm this currently - but we are getting many reports of chaos on the streets of the capital.
6:26pm: Further reports of live ammunition being used on protesters in Tripoli, with lots of tweets saying security forces are again driving cars around the city, shooting at everyone and everything.
Ahmed Elgazir, a human rights researcher, told Al Jazeera that Libya News Centre, an organisation based in Geneva, had received a call for help from a woman "witnessing the massacre" in progress, who called on a satellite phone after landlines were cut.

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