MAJOR UPDATE: Just woke up to this:
The U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other embassy staff were killed in a rocket attack on their car, a Libyan official said, as they were rushed from a consular building stormed by militants denouncing a U.S.-made film insulting the Prophet Mohammad.http://news.yahoo.com/...
Gunmen had attacked and burned the U.S. consulate in the eastern city of Benghazi, a center of last year's uprising against Muammar Gaddafi, late on Tuesday evening, killing one U.S. consular official. The building was evacuated.
The Libyan official said the ambassador, Christopher Stevens, was being driven from the consulate building to a safer location when gunmen opened fire.
"The American ambassador and three staff members were killed when gunmen fired rockets at them," the official in Benghazi told Reuters.
Reports from the BBC and Twitter say that the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya and the US Embassy in Cairo have been attacked tonight. Twitter is ambivalent about whether a person is dead but injuries seem to be confirmed.
Militiamen in Libya have stormed the US consulate in Benghazi, the country's second largest city.The consulate in Benghazi was apparently attacked with RPGs and is now being ransacked. The cause is said to be a movie critical of of the prophet.
Reports say they were protesting against a US-made film that is allegedly insulting to the Prophet Muhammad, and set fire to the building.
The building is said to have burnt down.
I am supposed to fly out to Benghazi tomorrow. Even though this time I will be arriving as a Greek, those who know me there know that I am American. For the first time I'm scared.
Will update as events unfold.
Rana Jawad @Rana_J01
official says things calmer now and area vacated, government forces gradually moving in to secure area #Benghazi #Libya #US consulate attack
Retweeted by LibyanYouthMovement
Olivia Lang @olivia_langWill post links to those pics as they come in.
Incredible pics coming in from Reuters on #Libya attacks - will shortly be on our story
Here is the link to those first pics.
Jim Acosta @jimacostacnn
Romney: Obama Admin's 1st response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks
Retweeted by Hala Gorani
Now on the front page of the NYT:
CAIRO — Protesters angry over an amateurish American-made video denouncing Islam attacked the United States Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, killing an American employee, while Egyptian demonstrators stormed over the fortified walls of the United States Embassy here.
On the 11th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, the assaults were a violent reminder that the changes sweeping the region have hardly dispelled the rage against the United States that still smolders in pockets around the Arab world.
The mobs were set off by reports that a Florida pastor had proclaimed Sept. 11 “International Judge Muhammad Day” and was promoting the new video, which mocks Islam’s founding prophet.
The American Embassy had released a statement shortly after noon that appeared to refer to Mr. Jones: “The United States Embassy in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims — as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions,” it said. “Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.”