A ferry evacuating Russians and foreigners departed on Monday from the northern Libyan port of Ras Lanuf, the Russian emergencies ministry said.
The vessel has 397 people on board, including 126 Russians.
The Saint Stefan-2 ferry, which has a capacity of 1,000 people, left the Italian port of Bari for the Libya port of Ras Lanuf on February 23. It was to depart on Sunday, but the departure was delayed by poor weather conditions.
The ferry is to take its passengers to Malta, from where Russians will be flown to Moscow by two planes of the emergencies ministry.
Russia has previously evacuated the larger part of its citizens from the riot-hit North African country by planes. Besides Russian nationals evacuated from Libya over the last few days, Russia has also evacuated citizens of Serbia, Thailand, Uzbekistan and a dozen other countries.
Violent nationwide protests demanding the end of the 42-year rule of Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi are currently raging across Libya. National authorities clamped down on the protests.
Up to 2,000 people were killed and between 4,000 and 6,000 others were wounded in the clashes with security forces. Libyan authorities have pledged to continue to suppress the opposition.
MOSCOW, March 1 (RIA Novosti)