The French Foreign Ministry said three French Airbus planes were heading to Tripoli’s airport — where the French Embassy has set up a temporary office — to fly out 530 to 550 people.
Spanish oil company Repsol-YPF had about 200 workers and their relatives in Libya before the crisis began, and a company source said Tuesday that some had been evacuated from the country and that Repsol was trying to get the rest out. The source spoke on condition of anonymity because the source was not authorized to discuss the matter.
Other oil companies, including Italy’s Eni, Royal Dutch Shell PLC, United Kingdom-based BP and Germany’s Wintershall, a subsidiary of BASF, have been pulling out employees.
Emirates said it was halting its daily flights to Tripoli until further notice. British Airways canceled Tuesday’s flight to Tripoli and its return leg to London’s Heathrow Airport as a precaution, spokesman Euan Fordyce said. The airline, which flies daily to and from Tripoli, is reviewing flights for the rest of the week, Mr. Fordyce added.
Germany’s Lufthansa said it was going ahead with its scheduled flight from Tripoli to Frankfurt on Tuesday and was using a larger plane than usual to get as many people out as possible.
In addition, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said that two military planes were in the air to help the evacuation effort. He added that “all other possibilities are being examined, including the sea route.”
Many Germans already left on a scheduled flight Monday, Mr. Westerwelle said, but German diplomats were working on getting people out. Some 500 Germans are registered as living in Libya, and the Foreign Ministry estimates that some 400 were still there Tuesday morning, a ministry spokeswoman said on condition of anonymity in line with German government policy.
Frances D’Emilio in Rome, Mike Corder in Amsterdam, David Nowak in Moscow, Alan Clendenning in Madrid, Geir Moulson in Berlin, Jamey Keaten in Paris, Salah Nasrawi in Cairo and Adam Schreck in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, contributed to this report.