UPDATE: All American staff in Benghazi have been evacuated to Germany. Additionally, a Marine force has been sent to Tripoli to provide extra security for American staff there, which has been dropped to emergency levels.
FOX News confirms: 2 U.S. Navy guided missile destroyers are being moved off the coast of Libya. According to a second U.S. official this is for “contingency purposes.”
The U.S. Ambassador to Libya and three other Americans were killed amid a wave of anti-American anger in both Libya in Egypt. All over an anti-Islam movie made in America.
FOX News Radio’s Emily Wither reports from Jerusalem:
The US Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens was killed along with three other embassy aides at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. Under attack by an angry and armed mob who were protesting a film made in the U.S. that ridiculed Islam.
This protester had a warning for America:
(Protester) “Don’t make our people angry because they will kill, they will fight, they will do such a situation.”
The fear that these protests also happening in Cairo will spread elsewhere as the movie goes viral. There’s reports of protests being planned in the Algerian capital while Afghanistan has banned the Youtube site showing the movie to stop it spreading there.
In Jerusalem, Emily Wither, FOX News Radio.
WATCH to learn more on this story:
A strong reaction from President Obama to the killings in Libya.
FOX News Radio’s Rich Johnson reports from the White House:
The President said he condemns in the strongest possible terms the attacks that killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others. The alleged provocation: A U.S. produced movie that ridicules Islam.
(President Obama) “We reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others. But there is absolutely no justification to this type of senseless violence. None.”
President Obama says the U.S. will work with the Libyan government to find those responsible, and that no act of terror will shake Americans’ resolve.
At the White House, Rich Johnson, FOX News Radio.
LISTEN to President Obama speak on the attack in Libya:
READ a statement from President Obama on the attack:
“I strongly condemn the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi, which took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. Right now, the American people have the families of those we lost in our thoughts and prayers. They exemplified America’s commitment to freedom, justice, and partnership with nations and people around the globe, and stand in stark contrast to those who callously took their lives.
I have directed my Administration to provide all necessary resources to support the security of our personnel in Libya, and to increase security at our diplomatic posts around the globe. While the United States rejects efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others, we must all unequivocally oppose the kind of senseless violence that took the lives of these public servants.
On a personal note, Chris was a courageous and exemplary representative of the United States. Throughout the Libyan revolution, he selflessly served our country and the Libyan people at our mission in Benghazi. As Ambassador in Tripoli, he has supported Libya’s transition to democracy. His legacy will endure wherever human beings reach for liberty and justice. I am profoundly grateful for his service to my Administration, and deeply saddened by this loss.
The brave Americans we lost represent the extraordinary service and sacrifices that our civilians make every day around the globe. As we stand united with their families, let us now redouble our own efforts to carry their work forward.”
LISTEN to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speak on the attack:
READ a statement by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on the attack:
“It is with profound sadness that I share the news of the death of four American personnel in Benghazi, Libya yesterday. Among them were United States Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and Foreign Service Information Management Officer, Sean Smith. We are still making next of kin notifications for the other two individuals. Our hearts go out to all their families and colleagues.
A 21 year veteran of the Foreign Service, Ambassador Stevens died last night from injuries he sustained in the attack on our office in Benghazi.
I had the privilege of swearing in Chris for his post in Libya only a few months ago. He spoke eloquently about his passion for service, for diplomacy and for the Libyan people. This assignment was only the latest in his more than two decades of dedication to advancing closer ties with the people of the Middle East and North Africa which began as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Morocco. As the conflict in Libya unfolded, Chris was one of the first Americans on the ground in Benghazi. He risked his own life to lend the Libyan people a helping hand to build the foundation for a new, free nation. He spent every day since helping to finish the work that he started. Chris was committed to advancing America’s values and interests, even when that meant putting himself in danger.
Sean Smith was a husband and a father of two, who joined the Department ten years ago. Like Chris, Sean was one of our best. Prior to arriving in Benghazi, he served in Baghdad, Pretoria, Montreal, and most recently The Hague.
All the Americans we lost in yesterday’s attacks made the ultimate sacrifice. We condemn this vicious and violent attack that took their lives, which they had committed to helping the Libyan people reach for a better future.
America’s diplomats and development experts stand on the front lines every day for our country. We are honored by the service of each and every one of them.”
LISTEN to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speak on the attack in Libya:
Watch a VIDEO of Chris Stevens introducing himself to the Libyan people, produced by the State Department when he first became the U.S. Ambassador:
The object of anti-American violence in Libya and Egypt is a film produced by a California man.
FOX News Radio’s Rich Johnson reports from Washington:
The film is called ‘The Innocence of Muslims’, and was written and directed by an Israeli Jew named Sam Bacile, who lives in California but has gone into hiding. But he told the Associated Press his motivation was to show the world that Islam is a cancer and the prophet Muhammad was a fraud.
The film sat un-watched for the past year until highlights made it to the internet and Florida Pastor Terry Jones began promoting it. You’ll remember Jones as the man who inspired riots by threatening to burn copies of the Koran.
In Washington, Rich Johnson, FOX News Radio.
WATCH to see more on protests in Cairo, Egypt:
READ a statement from the Libyan government, which has been translated from Arabic to English:
The General National Congress of Libya (GNC) and the Transitional Government wish to express their strong condemnation and disapproval for the criminal attack on the American Consulate in Benghazi yesterday, the death of his Excellency the US Ambassador and 3 staff members, injury to numerous people, and damage to the building. We emphasize that this disgraceful act is contrary to the teachings of our values and religion, as well as the Islamic and Arabic cultural norms of hospitality. During a time when we strongly condemn any attempt to abuse or insult the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him), we still strongly condemn and oppose any use of force or terrorism against civilians, or the killing of innocent people.
This criminal act has coincided with numerous attempts of those who seek to hamper the democratic aspirations of Libya. They have taken a stance against the GNC and Transitional Government in order to spoil the joy of the Libyan people and derail what has been accomplished in Libya, and to obstruct our progress, which includes capturing some of the ex-regime members like Abdulla Al Sanousi. This confirms that the cowardly act comes as part of a series of incidents of the 2/17 revolution, which conspires to thwart the security of the country.
After the joint meeting which lasted until the early morning between the GNC and Transitional Government and its many members and security and military offices, some strict legal measurements were taken to put a stronghold on the offenders and bring them to justice, in protection of the national and homeland security. Also, a united entity was formed between the GNC and Transitional Government to follow up on the security situation and specifically to ensure that security measures are taken. There will be constant communication and we confirm that no one will flee or be at large from justice and accountability.
Also, the GNC and Transitional Government present in the name of the Libyan people their deepest condolences to the US Government, the American people, the families of the Ambassador and victims, and confirm the close ties between Libya and the United States, which have become even closer since the decision of the American government to support the revolution of 2/17.
In conclusion, we assure that diplomatic delegations, foreign companies and expatriates in Libya are under the protection of our security, which shall ensure their safety. We call for all of the Libyan people and the Libyan institutions to stand as a united front against anyone who tries to undermine Libyan safety, thwart the potential of Libya or distort the Libyan image.
Tune into your local FOX News Radio affiliate for more on this developing story.