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Security official warned Americans three days before fatal Benghazi attack

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
September 16th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Jamal Mabrouk, a member of the February 17th Brigade and a local security official in Libya said that he had warned American diplomats in Libya three days before the deadly assault on the U.S. embassy in Benghazi. Mabrouk has gone on record as warning U.S. diplomats about the deteriorating security within the city.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Mabrouk has told CNN that both he and a battalion commander had a meeting about the economy and security, saying that the security situation wasn't good for international business.

"The situation is frightening, it scares us," Mabrouk told the U.S. officials.

Mabrouk says there has been an increasing presence of armed jihadist groups in the Benghazi area.

The attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi on September 11 killed four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens. The tragedy, some feel has upset the delicate political transition from dictatorship to democracy that was unfolding here.

The main building in the compound lies in charred ruins. The suite where the body of Stevens was found was protected by a large door with steel bars; the windows had steel bars.

His body was recovered after looters broke into the room. It appears his security detail left him in the room while they tried to deal with the attack.

Questions remain in the tragedy. The protestors that stormed the embassy were allegedly incensed over the short film "Innocence of Muslims," made in the U.S. by a Californian who claimed to be a Coptic Christian.  

Chief among the questions is what happened to U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, who went missing during the attack.

The State Department has not yet released details about how Stevens died, though numerous media reports have said the ambassador was taken from the consulate to the Benghazi medical center by locals.

According to reports, Stevens was taken to the hospital, where he was allegedly unresponsive and covered in soot from the fire. A doctor was unable to revive him and declared him dead, the reports said.

A Libyan security guard, stationed at one of the gates bearing only a radio claimed that the assault began simultaneously from three directions.

Heavy machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades were used, according to the guard. He also said that masked men threatened to kill him at gunpoint for "protecting the infidels." He declined to be photographed for fear of repercussions.

After the consulate was attacked and set on fire, some Americans escaped to a safe-house in another part of Benghazi which was also attacked.

Mabrouk said he received a telephone call from Tripoli about the arrival of a U.S. team at Benghazi airport that needed transport into the city.

He met the seven Americans, who were heavily armed but not in military uniform, on the runway and provided them with an armed escort. The seven Americans arrived at the safe house where they came under intense attack. The assailants then fled.

The Libyan government has vowed to bring the perpetrators of the attack to justice. Asked whether the government was not capable of controlling extremist groups, Mabrouk responded "You are not far from the truth."

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