Tripoli, 14 March 2013:
A man said to be a suspect in last September’s killing of US ambassador Chris Stevens and three of American diplomatic staff at the US mission in Benghazi is reported to have been detained by the Libyan authorities.
The man, named as Faraj Al-Chalabi, is said to have been a member both of Al-Qaeda and of Libyan Islamist Fighting Group (LIFG). He and two other Libyans, have been wanted by Libya in connection with the deaths of Germans Silvan and Vera Becker near Sirte in 1994. Warrants for the three’s arrest were issued in 1998. The killings were claimed by the Qaddafi regime to have been ordered by Osman bin Laden. However, links between Al-Qaeda and LIFG have long been denied by the latter, saying they were Qaddafi propaganda.
Nothing has been divulged as to extent of Chalabi’s involvement in the Benghazi slayings. It is said that the 46-year-old from Marj returned to Libya recently from Pakistan and was arrested a few days ago.
The only other person to have been detained in connection with Steven’s killing is Tunisian Ali Harzi who was held in jail in Tunisia for several weeks after been deported from Turkey last October. He was released two months ago on lack of evidence. By coincidence, the new Tunisian new prime minister Ali Larayedh said yesterday there was no evidence connecting Harzi to Steven’s death.
Last October, an Egyptian thought to have been involved in Benghazi attack died in a shoot-out with Egyptian security forces at an apartment in Cairo.