On this grey London morning only a few assembled photographers and the small knot of protesters across the road gave any indication of the turmoil behind the blank facade of Libya’s grand Knightsbridge embassy.

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A single policeman stood guard at the door, a tourist waited patiently in the cold for a visa and a cleaner put the rubbish out. On this grey London morning only a few assembled photographers and the small knot of protesters across the road gave any indication of the turmoil behind the blank facade of Libya’s grand Knightsbridge embassy.

Yet from Washington to New Delhi, many of Libya’s ambassadors have defected in protest at the regime’s violent repression that has seen thousands of peaceful demonstrators fired upon by snipers and fighter planes.

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