American teacher shot dead in Libya
GUNMEN shot dead an American teacher working in the Libyan city of Benghazi yesterday, more than a year after Islamist militants stormed the US consulate there, killing the US ambassador and three others.
Libya's fragile government is struggling to contain former fighters and militants who, two years after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi are challenging a fragile state that is still building up a national army with Western aid. Security sources and school officials said the American was shot as he was exercising in the city where he worked as a chemistry teacher at an international school.
"He was doing his morning exercise when gunmen just shot him. I don't know why," said Adel al Mansouri, a manager at the school in Benghazi. "He was so sweet with everyone."
US State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf confirmed that a US citizen was shot and killed in Benghazi but gave no further details.
The University of Texas released a statement identifying the teacher as Ronnie Smith, who had received a master's degree in chemistry from the school. It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the attack but assassinations and bombings are common in Benghazi. Three soldiers also were killed in attacks there yesterday.