Libya’s de facto head of state gave an eloquent tribute to the America’s slain ambassador in his address to the United Nations General Assembly today.
Mohamed Yousef El-Magariaf, president of the General National Congress of Libya, paid tribute to Chris Stevens as the “conscience of the world” who came to Libya’s side in its revolution and aftermath.
El-Magariaf called Stevens “a voice of reason and conscience, a man of love, a messenger of friendship who came to Libya following the outbreak of our freedom revolution, one who touched the people’s feelings, who traveled from Tripoli to the western mountains and back and all across Libya.”
“Chris Stevens spoke with everyone in Arabic, always smiled, and showed care. This human diplomat has found his place in the consciousness of the Libyan people. It was a day of sadness throughout Libya when he was assassinated along with his three aides,” he said. “We would like to express our deepest condolences to the American people for this grave loss. It was a loss for Libya as it was a loss for the United States of America.”
“We stress to the United States, its government and its people that this catastrophe will only increase our solidarity to entrench the hopes and objectives in which Ambassador Chris Stevens believed,” El-Magariaf said. “We shall defeat the plots of the backward terrorists that do not represent Libya, who not represent Islam. Islam is a religion of tolerance, peace and love, just as President Obama said from this rostrum two days ago. Our future is a future that will be chartered by people like Chris Stevens, not by people like his killers.”
He said that the Libyan government is determined to bring the killers to justice and provide ample security for diplomatic missions.
“This painful event in no way expresses the feelings of the Libyan people as people of moderation, hospitality and gratitude. Perhaps the large demonstrations condemning this perfidious crime in the city of Benghazi and other Libyan cities is best proof of the true feelings of the Libyan people and their full rejection of all forms of violence and extremism,” El-Magariaf said.
“Libya shall never be home to extremist groups. We shall always be a peaceful Muslim country, one of moderation.”