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Clinton defends Benghazi record during 11-hour congressional hearing

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has defended her record as the US's top diplomat during the 2012 Benghazi attack. Democrats and some Republicans accused the committee of trying to damage her presidential bid.

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Clinton grilled over 2012 embassy deaths

The US House Select Committee on Benghazi on Thursday ended 11 hours of questioning Democratic presidential contender and

former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Clinton staunchly defended her record as the US' top diplomat during the

attack that left four American nationals dead, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens,

on September 11, 2012.

"Despite all the previous investigations and all the talk about partisan agendas, I'm here to honor those we lost and to do what I can to aid those who serve us still," Clinton said, referring to seven

previous congressional investigations

into the attacks on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya.

Republicans have accused Clinton of failing to answer requests to increase security at diplomatic missions in Libya, and of blaming the attack on a derogatory video of the Muslim prophet Muhammad, which was found baseless in previous investigations.

Vindicated?

However, Clinton denied that she received any requests to bolster security at the Benghazi compound.

"I was responsible for quite a lot," Clinton noted during the hearing. "I was not responsible for specific requests and security provisions."

Several Republican lawmakers have also questioned the intentions of the latest investigation, with some, including House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, suggesting that it aims to damage Clinton's presidential bid, although the committee has denied the accusations.

"I've thought more about what happened than all of you put together," Clinton told the Republican-dominated committee.

"I've lost more sleep than all of you put together. I've been racking my brain about what could have been done, should have been done."

ls/bw (AFP, AP, Reuters)

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