Libya approves U.S. operations to get Benghazi suspects
October 9th, 2013
11:17 PM ET

Libya approves U.S. operations to get Benghazi suspects

By Barbara Starr

The Libyan government has given the United States "tacit approval" to conduct missions inside Libya to capture suspects involved in the terror attack on the diplomatic compound in Benghazi, a senior U.S. official told CNN.

The official has direct knowledge of the arrangements but declined to be identified due to the sensitive nature of the information.

Approval for action against Benghazi suspects, which was granted in recent weeks, is the same type of agreement that allowed a U.S. raid this past weekend in Tripoli.

In that operation, Army Delta Forces captured Abu Anas al Libi, an al Qaeda operative wanted for his alleged role in the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa.

Under these approvals, key Libyan government officials are aware of potential U.S. operations but may not know the exact timing and place of a mission.

This means the United States could at any point decide to conduct a Benghazi operation using intelligence and military operatives in the region.

CNN previously reported the United States has a target list of Benghazi suspects the Obama administration has tracked through intelligence.

Tracking efforts include drone surveillance and operatives, who have moved in and out of Libya in recent months.

A federal indictment in August charged several suspects in connection with the September 11, 2012, armed assault on the Benghazi mission that killed U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans, sources told CNN at the time.

The indictment remains under seal, but the sources have said that prominent Libyan militia figure Ahmed Abu Khattala was among those charged. Khattala has recently lived openly in Benghazi and has been interviewed by CNN's Arwa Damon.

U.S. officials said the raid to capture al Libi and any mission related to Benghazi are considered separate events.

The al Libi raid was supposed to remain secret for several days, but it became public almost immediately when al Libi's family in Libya said he had been abducted.

The disclosure of that mission raised questions about whether a Benghazi mission to get Khattala is still possible given the revelation that American commandos entered Libya to get al Libi.

CNN reported on Saturday that the al Libi operation was conducted with the knowledge of the Libyan government, according to a U.S. official.

Some details of the Libyan arrangements with the United States were first reported by the New York Times.

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    October 11, 2013 at 1:00 pm | Reply
  16. john smith

    America is the root of all terror. America has invaded sixty countries since world war 2.
    In 1953 America overthrow Iran's democratic government Mohammad Mosaddegh and installed a brutal dictator Shah. America helped Shah of Iran to establish secret police and killed thousands of Iranian people.
    During Iran-Iraq war evil America supported Suddam Hossain and killed millions of Iranian people. In 1989, America, is the only country ever, shot down Iran's civilian air plane, killing 290 people.
    In 2003,America invaded Iraq and killed 1,000,000+ innocent Iraqi people and 4,000,000+ Iraqi people were displaced.
    Now America is a failed state with huge debt. Its debt will be 22 trillion by 2015.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:50 am | Reply
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      Well don't stop there John! You had me at "root of all terror". Please proceed as I am anxiously awaiting your comments on how America is the secret Sith Lord "Americus" and is responsible for wiping-out 1 Billion Ewoks,...and the dinosaurs of course.

      October 11, 2013 at 1:11 pm | Reply
      • Joe grinm

        Crazy mad man

        October 13, 2013 at 11:35 am |
    • Al Whale

      hows that tinfoil hat. America may make mistakes but its the only force for good in the world.

      October 11, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Reply
      • Esmodenthes

        No, we Americans are not the only force of good in the world. Don't be ridiculous.

        October 11, 2013 at 10:44 pm |
      • Joe grinm

        No, do not be naive and zealot.

        October 13, 2013 at 11:36 am |
      • Carson Thaler

        hogwash... Blindly regurgitating that which you are fed is LESS THAN patriotic....

        October 14, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
    • fookinAllah

      oh yeah john MUSLIM smith.

      October 13, 2013 at 12:33 pm | Reply
    • Carson Thaler

      Unfortunately, you are correct... though the number of Iraqi dead are well over 1 million.....

      October 14, 2013 at 12:25 pm | Reply
  17. George Patton-2

    This is just more evidence of just how much control the U.S. and NATO have over Libya. This is how the Russians controlled Eastern Europe between 1949 and 1989!!!

    October 10, 2013 at 1:16 pm | Reply
    • Joe grinm

      USA needs puppets. Now the new rogue Libyan junta is a puppet.

      October 13, 2013 at 11:37 am | Reply
  18. emeraldcoastwxman

    Reblogged this on emeraldcoastwxman.

    October 10, 2013 at 12:33 am | Reply

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