SPEECHES AND PUBLIC EVENTS
Statement by Ambassador Francis Ricciardone on the Attack in Benghazi
September 13, 2012
I join President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton in condemning the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi which took the lives of four Americans, including my friend and colleague, Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens. All American diplomats serving in Turkey are deeply moved by the many expressions of solidarity and condolences expressed by officials of the Government of Turkey and so many private Turkish citizens since the news broke earlier today.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families, friends and colleagues of the victims at this difficult time. As President Obama said in his statement earlier today, Ambassador Stevens and his colleagues "exemplified America's commitment to freedom, justice, and partnership with nations and people around the globe, and stand in stark contrast to those who callously took their lives...The brave Americans we lost represent the extraordinary service and sacrifices that our civilians make every day around the globe. As we stand united with their families, let us now redouble our own efforts to carry their work forward."
For those of us here, we remember the close cooperation and important role our Turkish allies played in the liberation of Libya to guarantee its people a better future. Ambassador Stevens spoke warmly of the role his Turkish diplomatic colleagues had in protecting innocent lives and advancing the cause of peace there. The United States and Turkey continue to stand united in our battle against the forces of terror no matter where they manifest themselves as we advance our common democratic goals and values. As we mourn the loss of our diplomats in Benghazi, we also extend our condolences to the families of those Turkish citizens tragically lost to a terrorist attack in Istanbul on the same day."