US closes embassy in Syria
The United States announced Monday that it had closed its embassy in Damascus because of concerns over the worsening security situation in Syria, reported dpa.
US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said ambassador Robert Ford and all embassy personnel had left the country.
She said the Syrian regime "failed to respond adequately" to the security concerns of the US and other diplomatic missions.
"The recent surge in violence, including bombings in Damascus on December 23 and January 6, has raised serious concerns that our embassy is not sufficiently protected from armed attack," Nuland said.
She said that the deteriorating security situation, which led to the suspension of diplomatic operations, "makes clear once more the dangerous path (Syrian President Bashar al-)Assad has chosen, and the regime's inability to fully control Syria."