Obama speaks with Libyan, Egyptian presidents

3:50 AM, Sep 13, 2012   |    comments
Egyptian protesters carry their national flag and a flag with Arabic that reads, No God but Allah, and Mohammed is his prophet, during a demonstration in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt
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WASHINGTON -- The White House says President Barack Obama has called the presidents of Libya and Egypt and urged them to continue working with the United States to ensure the safety of diplomatic personnel.

Obama thanked Libyan President Mohamed Magariaf for his Mr. condolences over the deaths of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other State Department officers during an assault on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi Tuesday. The White House says the two leaders agreed to work together to bring the attackers to justice.

During a second call Tuesday, Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi promised Egypt "would honor its obligation to ensure the safety of American personnel," the White House said.

The president told Morsi that while "he rejects efforts to denigrate Islam ... there is never any justification for violence against innocents."

U.S. officials say the Pentagon is moving two warships to the Libyan coast.

Officials say one destroyer, the USS Laboon, moved to a position off the coast Wednesday, and the USS McFaul is en route and should be stationed off the coast within days. The officials say the ships, which carry Tomahawk missiles, do not have a specific mission. But they give commanders flexibility to respond to any mission ordered by the president.

U.S. investigators are looking into whether the deadly attack on a U.S. consulate in Libya was a coordinated terrorist assault to mark the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks and not just spontaneous mob violence triggered by an anti-Islam video on YouTube.

The speaker of Libya's Parliament says the attackers "may have had foreign loyalties" - an apparent reference to international terrorists.

Meanwhile, actors in the anti-Muslim film that may have sparked attacks against the U.S. diplomatic missions say they were misled about the movie. They say some of their dialogue was crudely dubbed during post-production.

The filmmaker goes by the name of Sam Bacile, but there are doubts about his identity.


(Associated Press)

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