Attacks In Libya And Egypt on US Embassy and Consulate

An amateur film was created by an Israeli filmmaker, Sam Bacile, and promoted by Morris Sadek, an extreme anti-Muslim Egyptian Christian campaigner who lives in California. Clips of the film, deemed offensive to Islam's Prophet Muhammad, have been circulating the internet which sparked attacks in Libya and Egypt.

Libya Attack

An armed mob, enraged by the film, attacked the US consulate in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi using rocket propelled grenades. The US ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, and three additional personnel were killed in the attack. The deaths, due to smoke inhalation, were confirmed to the AFP news agency by Wanis al-Sharif, the Libyan deputy interior minister.

Sharif stated that the attackers, who are calling themselves the “Islamic law supporters,” were more heavily armed than the Libyan security services tasked with protecting the embassy.

Cairo Attack

Thousands of Egyptian demonstrators, angry about the same film, tore down the US flag at the embassy in Cairo and replaced it with a black Islamic flag. Police and army personnel formed defensive lines around the U.S. Embassy in an effort to prevent the demonstrators from advancing.

Travellers in these regions should exercise extreme caution until tensions subside. In these situations, embassies, hotels, and markets frequented by westerners are often targets. The U.S. government has since ordered the departure of all non-emergency government personnel from Libya. The airports in Benghazi and Tripoli are open and U.S. citizens have been encouraged to depart by commercial air.

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