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Politics Trump eliminates funding for program honoring Ambassador Stevens, who was killed in Benghazi

02:20  16 february  2020
02:20  16 february  2020 Source:   washingtonpost.com

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The Trump administration has zeroed out of the State Department budget a request from a nonprofit set up in honor of J. Christopher Stevens , the ambassador killed in Benghazi , Libya, in a 2012 terrorist attack.

“As Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens ’s mother, I am writing to object to any mention of his name and death in Benghazi , Libya, by Donald Trump ’s campaign Republicans have repeatedly criticized presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton for the way she handled the Benghazi attack as

The Trump administration has zeroed out of the State Department budget a request from a nonprofit entity set up in honor of J. Christopher Stevens, the U.S. ambassador killed in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012 terrorist attacks.

The agency’s fiscal 2021 budget proposal cuts $420 million from its educational and cultural programs, including $5 million for the Stevens Initiative, an organization created to memorialize the late ambassador’s dedication to cultivating international exchanges.

This appears to be at least the third time that dedicated funding for the program has been removed by Trump’s budget officials. For the past two years, Congress has restored it.

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The sister of U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens , who was killed during an attack on the United States Mission in Benghazi in 2012, said on Tuesday she does not place any Dr. Anne Stevens told The New Yorkerthat she places blame on Congress for not properly funding the State Department.

Ambassador and three other American embassy staff killed after Islamist militants fired rockets at their car On Tuesday night a group of extremists attacked the US consulate building in Benghazi , setting it Kish, who is from Benghazi , blamed the attack on hardline jihadists. He said locals in Benghazi

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A State Department official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss official matters, defended the suggested cut, saying that even if it isn’t included in a final budget, it doesn’t necessarily mean the Stevens program will lose funding.

“The flexibility of the ECE [Educational and Cultural Exchange] budget allows for programs to continue under other line items, such as ‘Professional and Cultural Exchanges,’ even when they do not have a separate budget line item,” the official said in an email.

The attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission and another facility in Benghazi became the focus of a protracted Republican-led effort to fault then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as inadequately protecting Stevens and the three other Americans who were killed.

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The killing of the US ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens , along with three other US embassy staff, raises a host of questions "The American ambassador and three staff members were killed when gunmen fired rockets in their direction," a Libyan official in Benghazi told Reuters news agency.

They included Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and Sean Smith, a State Department information officer, who were killed at the main American diplomatic compound in Benghazi by a mob of militia fighters who had been incited by an American-made video deriding the Prophet Muhammad.

In 2016, then-candidate Donald Trump used the Benghazi attacks to criticize Clinton, saying, “By the way, with Benghazi and with our ambassador — remember? That’s all Hillary Clinton, folks.”

One of the more outspoken GOP lawmakers during that time was now-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, then a conservative congressman from Kansas in his second term in the House. As a member of the GOP-led House Select Committee on Benghazi, he publicly grilled Clinton and other State Department officials over who was at fault for security lapses.

Pompeo accused Clinton of ignoring requests from embassies seeking extra protection. And even after a two-year investigation by the select committee turned up no basis to attach blame to Clinton in the attacks, Pompeo wrote a dissenting view accusing her of putting “political expediency and politics ahead of the men and women on the ground.”

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One of the four surviving warriors who defended more than 30 American personnel at two U.S. facilities in Benghazi tells Breitbart News he supports Donald J The book chronicles their fight to beat back repeated attacks along with former Navy SEALs Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty, who were killed

Christopher Stevens was among four Americans killed in the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi on Sept. Trump in a speech accepting his party’s nomination Thursday referred to the victims of the Benghazi attack, who he claimed were "left helpless to die at the hands of savage killers" by Clinton

But now, the suggested cutting of funding to the organization created in Stevens’s memory comes amid scrutiny of the Trump administration, and Pompeo specifically, over the treatment of U.S. diplomats.

The Ukraine impeachment probe into President Trump’s conduct revealed that the White House operated a shadow diplomacy outside normal State Department channels that included an effort to smear the reputation of then-U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch. Yovanovitch, a career Foreign Service officer, was later unceremoniously removed from her post.

Pompeo has come under fire for not doing more to protect Yovanovitch professionally or personally.

colby.itkowitz@washpost.com

a dirty old room: Fire damage in the main compound villa in which Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens suffered the asphyxiation that killed him at a U.S. diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya.© Michael Birnbaum/The Washington Post Fire damage in the main compound villa in which Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens suffered the asphyxiation that killed him at a U.S. diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya. Christopher Prentice, J. Christopher Stevens sitting next to a man in a suit and tie: Stevens, center, speaks with Misrata council member Suleiman Fortia at the Tibesty Hotel in Benghazi, where an African Union delegation was meeting with Libyan opposition leaders on April 11, 2011.© Ben Curtis/AP Stevens, center, speaks with Misrata council member Suleiman Fortia at the Tibesty Hotel in Benghazi, where an African Union delegation was meeting with Libyan opposition leaders on April 11, 2011.

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