Athens Blast Labeled Terrorist Act
Update2: Launcher Found
ATHENS, Greece (AP) — A rocket was fired at the U.S. embassy early Friday, striking the front of the building but causing no injuries. A senior police official said the blast was an act of terrorism.
Police cordoned off streets around the heavily guarded building after the explosion shortly before 6 a.m. The shell struck the third floor and smashed glass in nearby buildings.
Investigators found the device used to fire the rocket shell at a construction site near the embassy.
ATHENS, Greece — Police cordoned off streets around the U.S. Embassy in Athens early Friday after an explosion inside the embassy compound that a senior police official said was an "act of terrorism."
The blast smashed glass in the front of the building near the U.S. emblem of the embassy.
"This is an act of terrorism. We don’t know where from," Attica Police Chief Asimakis Golfis said. "There was a shell that exploded in the toilets of the building … It was fired from street level."
Authorities searched nearby apartment buildings and a hospital amid reports that an explosive device may have been fired at the building. The blast smashed glass in the front of the building, near the U.S. emblem of the embassy.
"I heard a loud bang I didn’t realize what was going on," said Giorgos Yiannoulis, who runs a kiosk near the embassy.
Police did not report any injuries and embassy officials could not immediately be reached for comment.
Traffic came to a standstill across parts of central Athens, as police and emergency services scrambled to the embassy building.
The U.S. Embassy — a heavily guarded building — is a frequent destination for protest groups but American officials have not been targeted in more than a decade.