Suspects linked to the Benghazi terror attack have not been placed on the State Department’s "Rewards for Justice" program, and following further questioning of State Department Press Secretary Jen Psaki on the issue, it does not look like the suspects will be added to the list any time soon.
Q: A quick follow-up. Last night's CBS report mentioned two suspects in Benghazi with al-Qaida ties, one a former Guantanamo Bay detainee and another al-Qaida operative with ties to bin Laden that go back 15 years. Is there any follow-up to some of questioning last week about whether these people will be put on the Rewards for Justice list?
MS. PSAKI: I don't have any update for you on the Rewards for Justice list.
I will say, you know, the question has always been who, exactly, the attackers were, what their motivations were and how they -- the attack evolved. We've always said that there were extremists that we felt were involved. There's an ongoing criminal investigation, as you are very familiar with, that you just referred to, so I'd refer other questions to them.
Q: When you call them extremists, will you not say al-Qaida from that podium?
MS. PSAKI: It's an ongoing FBI investigation. I'm not going to ascribe more specifics.
Q: Will you consider these suspects -- these two al-Qaida suspects and others -- to be added to the rewards for terror (sic) list?
MS. PSAKI: I appreciate your persistence on this particular line of questioning, Lucas ; I just don't have anything new for you today.
Q: I'll take that as a no, you're not considering that.
MS. PSAKI: I don't have anything new for you on this specific topic.
Last week, State Department Deputy Press Secretary Marie Harf was pressed on the Benghazi suspects’ absence from the list. "Whether we pay a couple million dollars isn't the point," Harf said."The point is we believe it's a priority ... and whether they are on a website or not doesn't change that."
The Rewards for Justice program offers multimillion-dollar payouts for tips regarding wanted terrorists, currently ranging between $500,000 and $25 million.
Published under: Benghazi , Jen Psaki , State Department , Terrorism