Middle East

White House : Libya attack was terrorism

President Barack Obama greets supporters on the tarmac upon his arrival at Toledo Express Airport, Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2012, in Swanton, Ohio. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

TOLEDO, Ohio: The White House said Wednesday that President Barack Obama did see the attack on the US consulate in Benghazi as terrorism, after Mitt Romney accused him of downplaying the incident.

The Republican presidential candidate, hoping to dent the president's favorable approval ratings on foreign policy, has attacked Obama for describing turmoil in the Middle East as "bumps in the road."

"The White House's failure to acknowledge that the assassination of our ambassador was a terrorist attack, a terrorist event, suggests that they're trying to paper over the seriousness of what's happening in the Middle East," Romney told CNN on Tuesday.

But White House spokesman Jay Carney reiterated Obama's views on the attack as the president flew to a campaign event in Ohio.

"It is the president's view that it was a terrorist attack," Carney said.

Asked why Obama has yet to use the word "terrorism" in conjunction with the attack which killed four Americans, including the US ambassador to Libya, Carney said: "There is no reason beyond his trying to provide a full explanation of his views."

The White House last week described the assault on the consulate as a "terrorist attack" that could have links to Al-Qaeda.

Obama said in an appearance on the ABC talk show "The View" aired Tuesday that the assault two weeks ago "wasn't just a mob action."





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