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American ambassador dead in attack on Benghazi consulate

Published September 12th, 2012 - 05:16 GMT

The American ambassador died last night in attack in the Libyan city of Benghazi, media reports claimed Wednesday. Earlier it was reported that a U.S. official was killed Tuesday and another injured in a violent attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi in eastern Libya. The attack was carried out by armed men protesting against a film offensive to Islam, according to them. According to the Libyan authorities, the protest is against the same movie denounced by thousands of Egyptians, mostly Salafists, who demonstrated Tuesday - the anniversary of the attacks of September 11, 2001 in the United States - outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, before pulling the American flag and replacing it with a banner of Islam.

"An American official was killed and another wounded in the hand. Other staff have been evacuated and are safe," said Wanis al-Sharef, Libya's Deputy Interior Minister. Another local official in Benghazi confirmed the death of an "American official". But the two officials were not able to determine whether the officer was a diplomat.

The film in question is called Innocence of Muslims and was directed by Israeli-American, Sam Bacile, who told the American newspaper: "Islam is a cancer." The film is supported by Pastor Terry Jones, who caused controversy by burning copies of the Koran in April.

In Benghazi, "demonstrators attacked the U.S. consulate. They fired in the air before entering the building," said al-Sharef. The US State Department spokesman, Victoria Nuland, confirmed the attack. "We condemn it in the strongest terms the attack against our diplomatic mission," she said in a statement before the announcement of the death of an American official.

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