Clinton defends US support for Arab Spring nations
WASHINGTON (AFP) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday defended United States (US) support for Arab Spring nations as "a strategic necessity," vowing never to retreat amid a firestorm over the attack on a US mission in Libya.
"We will not return to the false choice between freedom and stability. And we will not pull back our support for emerging democracies when the going gets rough," Mrs Clinton told a US think tank.
"That would be a costly strategic mistake that would, I believe, undermine both our interests and our values." Republicans have seized on the Sept 11 attack at the US consulate in Benghazi, eastern Libya, to savage the administration of President Barack Obama, accusing it failing to protect diplomats and organising a cover-up.
Four American diplomatic staff died in the attack, including ambassador Chris Stevens, the first envoy to be killed while on active duty since 1979.