LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Libyan-Americans in the Southland are speaking out against the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Libya.

“It’s shameful; there’s no other way to describe it,” said Dina Duella, a Libyan-American who teaches at Chapman University in Orange.

The Muslim Public Affairs Council held a news conference Wednesday morning to condemn the violence, calling it animalistic behavior and a violation of Islam.

“There are times of war and times of peace. Ambassadors enjoy the protection of the country in which they exist,” council member Dr. Maher Hathout said.

Initial reports blamed the attack on an anti-Islamic YouTube video called “Innocence Of Muslims”. The Obama administration is looking into whether the attack was coordinated to take place on the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

“We pray that, as we move forward from the years since 2001, that we can have more compassion, more love and more fiercer connections not to spread more hate,” Rabbi Joshua Levine-Grater said at the conference.

“The ambassador who was killed was revered in Libya. He was considered a champion of the revolution,” Duella said.

Last year, Duella spent several months in Libya during the revolution. During her trip, she briefly met U.S. ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, who was slain during the attack.

Duella hopes to return to Libya, a country that she said is in desperate need of more security.

“This is the result of the larger issue of the political vacuum that is left in Libya, and the fact that there’s no security. There’s really no law and order,” Duella said.

A local Libyan-American group said they would lay flowers at the Federal Building in Westwood in honor of the Americans who were killed Tuesday.


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