The US has withdrawn its ambassador to Syria because of concerns for his safety.

The US ambassador to Syria, Robert Ford, reportedly left Damascus after “credible threats to his safety”, according to a US spokesman. According to reports from Syria, Ford had angered Syrian authorities by visiting opposition figures.

In response to the withdrawal of Ford, Syria withdrew its ambassador from Washington on Monday 24 October.

More than 3,000 people are reported to have been killed in Syria since anti-government protests began in January. Syrian president Bashar al-Assad assumed power in 2000 after his father had ruled the country for three decades.