Following attack on Italian consul, Libya announces special diplomatic security force
On Saturday, gunmen opened fire on the Italian consul's armored car in Benghzi, Libya. In the wake of this attack, and the Sept. 11 attack on the US mission which killed the ambassador and three other Americans, Libya has announced a plan for a special security force to protect foreign diplomats.
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An Italian foreign ministry spokesman said security around officials in Benghazi was already high before Saturday's attack, which will strengthen views that the city is seen as too dangerous a place for foreign diplomats and workers.Skip to next paragraph
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However four months on, no arrests have been made, with some saying it is too difficult for the weak armed forces to move against these groups and there is no real desire to dig too deep for fear of reprisals.
In a scathing assessment released last month, an official U.S. inquiry determined security at the Benghazi mission was inadequate to deal with the attack and there was little evidence militia guards alerted Americans to the assault or swiftly summoned reinforcements once it was under way.
The eastern city of Benghazi was where the anti-Gaddafi uprising broke out nearly two years ago but it is now a hot spot for violence, riven with armed factions.
In November, the city's police chief was shot dead. And last June, a convoy carrying the British ambassador was attacked with a rocket-propelled grenade that injured two of his bodyguards.
The offices of the International Committee of the Red Cross in the city were also attacked last year, as was a convoy carrying the United Nations' former special envoy to Libya. (Editing by Robin Pomeroy)
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