Monday, January 31, 2011

First Americans evacuated from Egypt

Cairo, Egypt  The first of two charter planes carrying U.S. citizens out of chaotic Egypt landed Monday in Cyprus, the beginning of what could be a lengthy evacuation effort amid escalating unrest across the country.
At least two flights, carrying 219 Americans between them, were able to take off before Egypt's 3 p.m. curfew went into effect, according to the U.S. State Department.
The first flight, carrying 42 people, landed in Cyprus, according to the State Department. The second, carrying 177 Americans, took off Monday for Athens, Greece, but had not yet landed, the government said.
With at least 2,400 people seeking evacuation as of Monday morning, getting all Americans out of the country could take some time, said Janice Jacobs, the U.S. assistant secretary of state for consular affairs.
"People should be prepared for a very long wait," Jacobs said.

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