Senior US Official Quits over Libya Аttack

World | December 20, 2012, Thursday // 07:30
Bulgaria: Senior US Official Quits over Libya Аttack Four US diplomatic officials were killed in the Benghazi attack, among them the US ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens (pictured). Photo by Getty Images

A senior US official quits and others are suspended following a damning report into their handling of September's killing of the US envoy to Libya

The state department said diplomatic security chief Eric Boswell resigned and three other unnamed officials had been put on administrative leave.

"The Accountability Review Board identified the performance of four officials, three in the Bureau of the Diplomatic Security and one in the Bureau of Near East Asia Affairs," state department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said in a statement.

"The secretary has accepted Eric Boswell's decision to resign... The other three individuals have been relieved of their current duties."

US media have named one of Boswell's deputies, Charlene Lamb, and Raymond Maxwell, deputy assistant secretary for the Maghreb, among those relieved of their duties.

US envoy to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other officials were killed in the attack on 11 September.

The ambassador died of smoke inhalation when he was trapped alone in the burning consulate building, after armed men had stormed the compound.

The news of the resignations came hours after an official internal report said security at the US consulate in the Libyan city of Benghazi was "grossly inadequate" when an attack killed the US ambassador.

The report identified the state department's Bureau of Diplomatic Security and Bureau of Near East Affairs for criticism over their apparent lack of cooperation and ensuing confusion with regards to protection.

"Systematic failures and leadership and management deficiencies at senior levels within two bureaus of the State Department resulted in a Special Mission security posture that was inadequate for Benghazi and grossly inadequate to deal with the attack that took place," the panel concluded.

However, the review did not suggest disciplinary action be taken against any individuals.

Despite "a lack of transparency, responsiveness, and leadership" among certain senior state department officials, the report found no "reasonable cause" that any specific individuals had "engaged in misconduct or wilfully ignored" their responsibilities.

It also said there had been "no immediate, specific" intelligence about the 11 September attack or threats to the consulate.

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Tags: Christopher Stevens, US Ambassador, Benghazi, US, consulate, Libya, Eric Boswell
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