First Published: 2013-01-13


Rome condemns attack on Italy's consul in eastern Libya


Terzi condemns as ‘vile act of terrorism’ gun attack on Italy's consul to Benghazi in eastern Libya from which diplomat escaped unscathed.


Middle East Online

No arrests have yet been made

ROME - Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi on Sunday condemned as "a vile act of terrorism" a gun attack on Italy's consul to Benghazi in eastern Libya from which the diplomat escaped unscathed.

"This was an attempt to destabilise the institutions of the new Libya," Terzi also said in a statement after consul Guido De Sanctis's bullet-proof car came under fire on Saturday.

"He was unhurt thanks to the security precautions taken to protect him," Terzi said.

The incident comes four months after US Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed in the city in an attack on the US mission there.

The Libyan government "has guaranteed its maximum commitment to ensure those responsible for this vile act of terrorism face justice," Terzi said.

"Italy expresses its strongest condemnation and reaffirms its full support for the course of democracy and reforms of authorities in Tripoli."

The impact of the bullets was clearly visible on the windows of the car, which was shot at as the consul was returning home after work.

A security official in Benghazi said no one was injured in the attack.

The source added that "members of the supreme security committee deployed to the scene and escorted the consul to a safe location."

He said no arrests had yet been made.

Italy is Libya's former colonial ruler and enjoyed close ties with slain Moamer Gathafi, though it later joined NATO efforts to unseat him.

Italy is also the biggest foreign investor in Libya's energy industry and has been building up relations with the new government in recent months.

Mohammed Megaryef, head of Libya's General National Congress and the de facto head of state, visited Italy last week for business talks.

De Sanctis, 51, has been in Benghazi since the start of the uprising against Gathafi in 2011 and was due to leave for a posting in Qatar next week.


Tunisia declares state of emergency after terrorist attack in heart of capital

Turkey downs Russia Su-24 fighter jet on Syria border

Kerry visits Israel with scant hopes for major breakthrough

Brussels extends terror alert as US issues worldwide travel warning

Somali pirates seize Iran fishing boat with 15 crew

Bahrain calls HRW torture report 'misleading'

Syria, Russia foreign ministers set Moscow talks

Rival Libya tribes sign peace deal to end months of fighting

Turkey reveals new cabinet of Erdogan allies

Hopes fade away as Sudan peace talks break without deal

At least 6 dead in Libya bomb attack

ISIS suicide bombers kill four in assault on Sinai hotel

Hollande heads to Washington to seek support for war on ISIS

UAE blames Islamists for delay in military operation in Taez

Egypt kills 5 Sudanese migrants near border with Israel

Anti-Muslim hate crimes rise 300 percent in Britain

Russia eases restrictions on nuclear cooperation with Iran

Gulf leaders to hold annual summit on December 10

Ex-Gathafi Minister arrested over murder of UK policewoman

UK boosts military spending as pressure grows to join anti-ISIS strikes

Israel bars Palestinians from West Bank settlement bloc

Iraq suspends northern flights due to danger posed by Russia missiles

Syria army advances against ISIS in central province of Homs

Pro-Kurdish leader escapes assassination attempt in Turkey

Tunisia group claims beheading of young shepherd on behalf of ISIS

Kerry arrives in Abu Dhabi for Syria discussions

Three Palestinians killed as fresh violence hits West Bank

Iran arrests ISIS-linked cell near Iraq border

Brussels remains on high alert for second day in a row

Israel seeks to strip citizenship of those who join ISIS

France warns Libya as ISIS gains ground

Fear escalates as ISIS edges closer to Syria Christian town

Iran sentences reporter Jason Rezaian to prison

Egyptians vote in second phase of parliamentary elections

Assad grateful to Russia as army advances on ‘nearly every front’

Obama calls for resolve in face of terrorist threats

Russia bombs ISIS in heaviest strikes since beginning of Syria war

ISIS claims deadly attack on Iraq Shiite mosque

Iran Revolutionary Guard simulate capture of Al-Aqsa Mosque

Turkey-backed Syria rebels seize two border villages from ISIS

Israel shuts down second Palestinian radio station

Brussels on lockdown over threat of ‘imminent’ attack

Palestinian 'apostate' gets Saudi death sentence

Jonathan Pollard's legend grew with far right in Israel

Shiite mosque bombings kill 6 in Iraq