Beijing: The killing of the US ambassador to Libya has drawn condolences from across the world to the Americans and condemnation of violence against diplomatic missions.
“The United States condemns in the strongest terms this outrageous and shocking attack,” US President Barack Obama said in a statement delivered at the White House Rose Garden on Wednesday, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at his side.
“And make no mistake, we will work with the Libyan government to bring to justice the killers who attacked our people,” he added.
The four Americans were killed when hundreds of protesters, angered by an alleged US-made movie that insults Prophet Mohammed, stormed and set ablaze the US consulate building on Tuesday night.
Stevens, who was on a short trip to Benghazi, died from suffocation as a result of smoke inhalation, the pan-Arab Al-Jazeera TV reported Wednesday.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the UN Security Council also condemned the deadly attack “in the strongest terms.”
“The United Nations rejects defamation of religion in all forms,” Ban said in the statement. “At the same time, nothing justifies the brutal violence which occurred in Benghazi [on Tuesday].”
European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton deplored the killing “in the strongest possible terms”, expressing sympathy to the families of the victims and the US authorities.
Moscow condemned the attacks against US diplomatic missions in Egypt and Libya, expressing its deep concern over the violence in the two Arab countries.
Russia strongly condemned the attacks against diplomats and diplomatic missions and took them as acts of terrorism, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
French President Francois Hollande firmly condemned the attack, calling on “Libyan authorities to shed light on these odious and unacceptable crimes by [identifying] those culprits and [bringing] them to justice.” He affirmed France’s solidarity with the United States.
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen strongly slammed the attack, saying “such violence can never be justified”.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei expressed the country’s shock at the attacks and voiced strong condemnation of the violent deeds.
Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird expressed his country’s strong condemnation of the fatal attack and deep regrets, while also urging Libya to bring the extremists responsible to swift justice and take all necessary measures to protect diplomatic premises in accordance with its international obligations.
The Benghazi assault was also strongly condemned by countries across Latin America, including Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Panama, Nicaragua, Venezuela and El Salvador.
Following the attack, the US Navy sent two destroyers to Libyan waters and a detachment of 50 Marines to secure the main US embassy in the Libyan capital of Tripoli, where most of the staff members were being flown out.
New protests against the film were also staged on Wednesday outside US missions in Morocco, Sudan and Tunisia in addition to those in Egypt and Libya.