Shots fired at Israeli embassy in Athens

No reports of injuries in incident in Greek capital; police investigating circumstances of reported shooting.

December 12, 2014 06:55
1 minute read.
Israeli embassy in Athens

Riot police stand guard outside the Israeli embassy in Athens in 2012. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Unidentified assailants opened fire on the Israeli embassy in Athens with a Kalashnikov assault rifle in the early hours of Friday, police said, but no injuries or damage were reported.

Four people on two motorcycles fired shots at the embassy building in a northern suburb of Athens, a police official said. Bullets were lodged in the walls and 54 spent bullet cases were found about 40 meters (yards) from the building, police said.

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The Greek government condemned the incident.

"Any terrorist attack hitting at the heart of democracy hits the heart of the country," government spokeswoman Sofia Voultepsi said.

Police have cordoned off the area around the embassy, which has not been a target in other acts of violence in Greece in recent years as an economic crisis raises social and political tensions.

Greece has long been considered a hotbed of anti-Israel sentiment due to the public's sympathy for the Palestinian cause.

In years past, the Greek government has forbidden its citizens from taking part in flotillas aimed at breaking Israel's naval blockade of the Gaza Strip.

The Jewish community has also been concerned over the rising popularity of far-right groups in Greece that openly espouse anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.

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