Libyan President el-Megarif reportedly eyes CIAl Qaeda in 'preplanned' attack on US consulate
Libyan President el-Megarif reportedly eyes Al Qaeda in 'preplanned' attack on US consulate
Published September 16, 2012
Libyan President Mohammed el-Megarif said he believes Al Qaeda is responsible for the deadly attack at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi that killed four Americans and said roughly 50 people have arrested in connection with the violence, according to two broadcast interviews Sunday.
Megarif, president of the Libyan National Congress, also reportedly differed with the Obama administration’s position that the attacks Tuesday were sparked by an anti-Islamic video on the Internet.
In an interview with NPR, Megarif said foreigners have been infiltrating his country over the past few months, which has been undergoing major changes since the uprising against the late dictator Muammar al-Qaddafi.
Megarif says the attackers, who he believes are connected to Al Qaeda, used the protests at the consulate as a cover to attack the U.S. Consulate on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
"We firmly believe that this was a precalculated, preplanned attack that was carried out specifically to attack the U.S. Consulate," Megarif told NPR.
U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other U.S. staffers were killed in the attacks.
"Our friend and friend of all Libyans and all residents of Benghazi and we feel very, very, very," deep sadness, Megarif told NPR.
Megarif said in a separate interview with CBS News that Libyan authorities have arrested about 50 people in connection with the attack.
The Americans were killed when attackers fired on the U.S. consulate with rocket-propelled grenades and set it on fire.
Megarif said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that "a few" of those who joined in the attack were foreigners, who had entered Libya "from different directions, some of them definitely from Mali and Algeria."
"The others are affiliates and maybe sympathizers," he added in the CBS interview.