Libyan ambassador to US praises deceased embassy officials

Statement from Ali Aujali, the Ambassador of Libya to the United States

We condemn yesterday's deplorable attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi and those who are responsible for it in the strongest terms.  The Government of Libya stands by the US in opposing acts of terrorism.   We are committed to bringing the attackers who perpetrated these crimes to justice.  

Ambassador Chris Stevens and the other American who were killed served the US Government bravely.  Ambassador Stevens worked tirelessly in support of freedom in Libya.  When Stevens was appointed as Special Representative of the US to the National Transitional Council of Libya in April 2011, he faced enormous challenges.  He served as the principal liaison of the US to the opposition in Libya and he helped coordinate the US response to the enormous humanitarian crises in Libya.  He handled these responsibilities with a calm demeanor and strong determination in the midst of a war. 

After the liberation of Libya, the new Libyan Government was overjoyed to learn that Stevens had been appointed as the US Ambassador to Libya.  He served in that role with great distinction and all Libyans owe him a debt of gratitude for his years of service in support of Libya.  The acts that led to the tragic loss of his life and the other Americans who served with him were perpetrated by a small group of criminals and are not supported by the Libyan people.  We stand with the US Government in offering our deepest condolences to the family of Ambassador Stevens and the other Americans who were killed and to the entire State Department.

I have had the honor to work side by side with Ambassador Stevens and to call him a friend for many years.  I will never forget the zeal and passion that he brought to his work.   He was a dedicated diplomat and a true gentleman.  The families of Ambassador Chris Stevens, Foreign Service Officer Sean Smith, and the two American security staff who were killed in yesterday's terror attack are in our thoughts and prayers today.