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Lawyer: Tunisian suspect in Libya attack freed

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Posted: Jan 8, 2013 1:08 PM
Source: Associated Press

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Topics: tunisia, libya, investigation, consulate, attack

TUNIS, Tunisia - It's the latest setback to the investigation into the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya in September.

Authorities in Tunisia have released one of the only men in custody for alleged links to the attack, which killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans.

Ali Harzi is a 26-year-old Tunisian who was extradited from Turkey in October. At the time, Tunisian authorities said they "strongly suspected" he was involved.

But today, his lawyer says a judge has "conditionally freed" Harzi for lack of evidence. He still has to remain in or near the Tunisian capital, to be available for further questioning.

One analyst says while it's possible that Harzi might have been involved with extremist groups, it's impossible to tell without more effort from Libya.

Even last month, U.S. officials were saying there's been a lack of cooperation from the governments in the region, particularly in Libya, in the investigation into the attack, and that most of the suspects remain free.

In November, the official in charge of security in Benghazi was assassinated. And on Sunday, Libya's government announced that the investigator who was sent to look into his death was kidnapped.

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