Did Benghazi mission violate international law?

Aaron Klein
WorldNetDaily
12/23/2012

JERUSALEM – Was the U.S. mission in Benghazi established in violation of international law?

According to the 39-page report released this week by independent investigators probing the Sept. 11 attacks at the diplomatic facility, the U.S. mission in Benghazi was set up without the knowledge of the new Libyan government…

…While the report documents how the U.S. mission’s special “non-status” exempted the facility from State Department security standards, it is not immediately clear whether the mission was also exempt from the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, which governs the establishment of overseas missions.

Like most nations, the U.S. is a signatory to the 1961 United Nations convention.

Article 2 of the convention makes clear the host government must be informed about the establishment of any permanent foreign mission on its soil: “The establishment of diplomatic relations between States, and of permanent diplomatic missions, takes place by mutual consent.”…

…Articles 12 of the Vienna Convention dictates, “The sending State may not, without the prior express consent of the receiving State, establish offices forming part of the mission in localities other than those in which the mission itself is established.”…

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…The report related how U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens first arrived in Libya secretly in a cargo ship to serve as a liaison to the rebels fighting the regime of Moammar Gadhafi.

It also confirmed that Stevens’ last official meeting was with “a Turkish diplomat.”

Turkey is the main force behind Arab support for the opposition currently targeting the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

WND has published a series of investigations showing the Benghazi mission was highly involved in the rebel-led Mideast revolutions to which Pickering is tied.

WND was first to report the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi served as a meeting place to coordinate aid for rebel-led insurgencies in the Middle East, according to Middle Eastern security officials.

In September, WND also broke the story that the slain ambassador, Christopher Stevens, played a central role in recruiting jihadists to fight Assad’s regime, according to Egyptian security officials…

…Most news media outlets covering the results of Pickering’s investigation did not note the possible non-diplomatic nature and status of the Benghazi mission…

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