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White House releases emails on Benghazi attack

world Updated: May 16, 2013 12:35 IST

IANS
Highlight Story

The White House has released 100 pages of emails and documents in its latest effort to blunt the Republicans' sharp criticism of cover-up in the deadly attack on the US consulate in the Libyan city of Benghazi last year.

These documents showed how the Obama administration's so-called "talking points" evolved about the attack, which took place Sep 11 and killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.

According to the emails, references to Al Qaeda, Islamist extremists based in Libya and prior terrorist attacks around Benghazi were removed from the talking points, reported Xinhua.

Susan Rice, the US ambassador to the UN, used later the talking points during her appearance on major TV networks to argue that the Benghazi attack was not an act of terror, but rather one arising from a spontaneous protest over an American-made film.

Rice came under unscathing attack from the Republicans as she was accused of trying to be misleading in the run-up to the presidential election in November.

Officials have defended the administration's handling of the attack, and President Barack Obama himself Monday dismissed his rivals' attack over the talking points as a politically-driven "sideshow".