Effort underway to evacuate Irish stranded in Libya

Efforts are being made to get six Irish citizens out of the city of Benghazi as riots rage in the North African state of Libya.

Over a hundred protestors have now been killed in over three days of violence against the state control of Colonel Gadaffi.

Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs has confirmed that it is making efforts to get the six Irish people out of the city at the center of the violent protests.

A spokesman for the Department confirmed that contact has been made with the six, and they are currently "safe and well" and have been told to "stay where they are for the moment."

Efforts to get them home have been hampered by the closure of the local airport while road transport is deemed "highly dangerous."

Troops armed with machine guns and heavy weaponry have already killed over a hundred anti-government protestors in the oil rich state.

There are concerns now that the protests, which echo those across the Middle East, will spread across Libya where Gadaffi has ruled with an iron fist for over 40 years.

A total of 40 Irish are currently living in Libya, most of them in and around the capital Tripoli which is currently described as stable.

The New York-based Human Rights Watch claimed yesterday that over a hundred anti-government protestors have now been killed by Libyan forces.

“Dozens were killed, we are in the midst of a massacre here,” a witness told the Reuters news agency.