The State Department is chartering an aircraft to evacuate Americans from the strife in Libya, and a ferry with some 150 U.S. citizens has departed Tripoli.
The department on Friday told Americans wishing to board the flight to make their way to Mitiga Air Field where they will be processed on a first-come, first-serve basis. Long waits are likely and priority will be given to those with medical emergencies.
Bloodshed and rage have marked Libya for days as protesters and backers of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi clashed.
The department said earlier in the day that the Maria Delores ferry left Tripoli at 6:37 a.m. EST en route to Malta. Aboard were more than 300 passengers, more than half U.S. citizens.