Hillary Clinton Knew American Killed in Mali, Describes Her as 'Loving Mother'

PHOTO: Anita Datar, 41, a U.S. citizen, was killed in an attack on the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako, Mali, on Nov. 20, 2015.PlayTulalens.org
WATCH American Survivor Describes Mali Hotel Attack

Hillary Clinton knew Anita Datar, an American woman who died in the violent hostage crisis in Mali, describing her a "loving mother" and the representation of "the best of America's generous spirit."

"I knew Anita as the loving mother of a wonderful 7-year-old boy and the former partner of David Garten, one of my senior policy advisers in the Senate," Clinton said in a statement today.

"My prayers are with the Datar and Garten families, especially Anita and David's son," Clinton said. "My heart breaks thinking of the burden he will now bear on his small shoulders and the courage he will have to show in the days ahead."

Datar, 41, was one of 18 guests killed Friday -- according to the Mali Ministry of Interior -- when gunmen stormed the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako, Mali, a hotel popular Westerners and the United Nations. Datar was a public health worker who once volunteered for the Peace Corps, her family said.

Clinton's statement added that Datar "was a bright light who gave help and hope to people in need around the world, especially women and families. From her service in the Peace Corps to her career in international health and development to her work with Tulalens, an NGO she helped start to connect poor women with health care, Anita represented the best of America’s generous spirit." 

PHOTO: Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gives a speech on her approach to defeating the Islamic State terrorist network in Syria, Iraq and across the Middle East at the Council on Foreign Relations, Nov. 19, 2015 in New York City.Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gives a speech on her approach to defeating the Islamic State terrorist network in Syria, Iraq and across the Middle East at the Council on Foreign Relations, Nov. 19, 2015 in New York City.

According to Datar's family, she worked as a senior manager at the consulting firm Palladium Group and was a founding board member of Tulalens, a non-profit "connecting underserved communities with quality health services."

Datar's family said she served in the peace corps in Senegal from 1997 to 1999 and "has spent much of her career working to advance global health and international development, with a focus on population and reproductive health, family planning, and HIV."

"Everything she did in her life she did to help others— as a mother, public health expert, daughter, sister and friend," the family statement said. "And while we are angry and saddened that she has been killed, we know that she would want to promote education and healthcare to prevent violence and poverty at home and abroad, not intolerance."

Clinton's statement today added, "As I said this week, America must wage and win an immediate battle against ISIS, al Qaeda, and other terrorist networks, as well as a generational struggle against radical jihadism."

"We face a choice between fear and resolve," Clinton said, adding that, "Anita’s murder should deepen our resolve."