Italy says temporarily shuts embassy in Yemen

May 31, 2011 22:27


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ROME - Italy has temporarily shut its embassy in Yemen and withdrawn staff, a foreign ministry spokesman said on Tuesday, citing threats against Western embassies in the Yemeni capital Sanaa.

"The situation in Sanaa is getting very tense," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Maurizio Massari. "There are threats against European embassies, particularly in the area of the capital where the Italian embassy is."

Street fighting raged in Sanaa on Tuesday after a tenuous ceasefire between tribal groups and forces loyal to President Ali Abdullah Saleh broke down, edging the impoverished Arab state closer to civil war.

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