The United States said it was taking measures to protect its citizens worldwide after protesters angry about an online film considered offensive to Islam attacked U.S. diplomatic compounds in Libya and Egypt on Tuesday, killing an American.
In Cairo, several men scaled the walls of the U.S. Embassy and tore down its American flag, according to CNN producer Mohamed Fadel Fahmy, who was on the scene.
In Libya, witnesses say members of a radical Islamist group called Ansar al-Sharia protested near the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, where NATO jets established no-fly zones last year to blunt ground attacks from then Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi.
The group then clashed with security forces in the city, blocking roads leading to the consulate, witnesses said.
A U.S. State Department officer was killed in the violence in Benghazi, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a statement late Tuesday.
"We are heartbroken by this terrible loss," Clinton said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and those who have suffered in this attack."
Clinton said that she condemned the attack on the U.S. facilities "in the strongest terms" and that following Tuesday's events, the U.S. government was "working with partner countries around the world to protect our personnel, our missions and American citizens worldwide."
Libya's General National Congress also condemned the attack, saying it "led to the regrettable injury and death of a number of individuals." Lawmakers said in a statement Tuesday night that they were investigating.
It was unclear whether the two attacks were coordinated, CNN national security contributor Fran Townsend said Tuesday night.
"One such breach of an embassy or consulate's walls or security on any given day would be tremendous news. ... The fact that two of them happened on the same day that is the 9/11 anniversary where Americans are remembering those that we lost, you have to ask yourself, what are American officials trying to understand about this and whether or not these two are related?" she asked.