Benghazi, Libya (CNN) --
Initial reports indicated that, ahead of the consular attack, Ansar al-Sharia had organized a protest to decry an inflammatory film that mocks the Muslim Prophet Mohammed and also protest the United States, where the film was privately produced.
On Thursday, Libyan Prime Minister Mustafa Abushagur said eight detained in connection with that assault include members of Ansar al-Sharia, though he added that not all the attackers came from one specific group.
Responding to the report from Benghazi, U.S. Sen. John McCain applauded the citizens' efforts Friday and said it represented the true, freedom-loving Libya that he and other U.S. officials involved in the country knew.
"Somewhere Chris Stevens is smiling," the Arizona Republican said. "This is what we knew ... about Libya."