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CIA Director on Benghazi: 'Early On It Was Seen as an Assault'

In an interview with Fusion’s Jorge Ramos, CIA Director John Brennan said bringing the perpetrators of the Benghazi attack to justice is a “challenge.” He added, “Whether you call it a terrorist attack or not…we need to get to the bottom of it.”

See transcript below:

Ramos: I want to ask you about Benghazi. Why haven’t we found the people who killed the four Americans in Benghazi?

Brennan: Well this is an effort that’s been underway by the U.S. government for the past 2 years, and we’re working very closely with our FBI partners and our partners overseas. We are trying to make sure we are able to bring these people to justice. This is a challenge. Libya is still beset by a number of security and stability issues, and so- the one thing about the U.S. intelligence and law enforcement community is that they always pursue their objectives and we’re not going to stop until we bring these people to justice.

Ramos: So far not a single arrest.

Brennan: I would defer to the Department of Justice as far as arresting these individuals, but our role in CIA is to make sure we’re able to bring to bear the intelligence that’s going to allow the appropriate law enforcement authorities to bring these people to justice.

Ramos: Finally on Benghazi, did you know, Director, from the beginning that it was a terrorist attack?

Brennan: You know, in the heat of an event such as Benghazi, there are a lot of different bits and pieces of information that you try to piece together. I think clearly, early on it was seen as an assault, and it was seen as a very dangerous one that was putting the lives of our diplomats at risk. So whether or not you call it a terrorist attack or an assault or a violent confrontation that unfortunately led to the death of four Americans, it is something that we need to make sure that we are able to get to the bottom of and as you say, bring the people responsible for that to justice.

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