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Senate Hearing on U.S. Consulate Attack in Benghazi

William Burns and Thomas Nides

William Burns and Thomas Nides

Washington, DC
Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee are holding the first of two Congressional hearing today on the September 11, 2012 attacks against the U.S. mission in Benghazi.

The State Department's highest ranking foreign service officers, William Burns and Thomas Nides, testified before the Committees today.  They answed questions regarding a new report by an independent panel assessing the Benghazi attack.

Accountability Review Board Chairman Ambassador Tom Pickering and Vice Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen held a press briefing Wednesday at the State Department to review the results of their investigation into the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.

Four Americans were killed in that attack, including U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens. Congress is investigating whether the State Department denied a request for extra security at that outpost earlier in the year and what actions were taken in the moments after the attack began.

Yesterday, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) conducted a closed briefing on the attack. He heard from an accountability review board investigating the details of the conflict.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was initially scheduled to testify before both Committees but will not attend.  She was diagnosed with a concussion last week after fainting at home.

Updated: Thursday, December 20, 2012 at 9:49am (ET)

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