| TUNIS, July 31
TUNIS, July 31 Two people were shot dead when
Libyan border guards opened fire to disperse hundreds of
Egyptians trying to cross into Tunisia to flee Libya's growing
chaos, the Tunisian state news agency TAP said on Thursday.
Hundreds of Libyan families and foreign workers have fled
their homes after two weeks of clashes between rival Libyan
militias over Tripoli's airport in the worst violence since the
2011 war to oust Muammar Gaddafi.
Most Libyan airports are closed because of deteriorating
security in Tripoli and Benghazi, leaving Tunisia's border one
of the few routes out for residents and some foreign diplomats
fleeing bloodshed in the capital.
Hundreds of Egyptians were protesting at the border point of
Ras Jdir after the Tunisian border guards closed its gates on
Thursday, a Reuters reporter at the site said.
"The incident came after Libyan troops fired to disperse the
Egyptians," TAP said, citing Tunisian security sources, who said
the two victims had been shot.
There was no immediate comment from the Libyan authorities.
Neighbours Tunisia, Algerian and Egypt are all concerned
about violent spillover from Libya's growing chaos involving
clashes between rival militia factions and also Islamist
militants and the armed forces.
Tunisia said on Wednesday it might close its frontiers with
Libya if the security situation keeps worsening.
"The situation is still under control, around 5,000 to 6,000
peoples are crossing every day, but we need to be careful,"
Tunisian Foreign Minister Mohamed Hamdi told reporters.
Tunisia is increasingly worried about border security as it
struggles with the rise of Islamist militants benefiting from
the chaos in North African countries such as Libya and Mali.
Earlier this month, 15 Tunisian soldiers were killed when
dozens of gunmen with rocket-propelled grenades attacked two
checkpoints in Chaambi near Algeria's border, one of the
deadliest strikes against Tunisia's armed forces.
(Writing By Aziz El Yaakoubi; Editing by Patrick Markey/Mark