Iraqi consulate in Damascus hit by mortar shell

DAMASCUS - A mortar shell hit the Iraqi consulate in the Syrian capital Damascus on Thursday, killing an Iraqi woman and wounding four other people, witnesses said.
State news agency SANA quoted a source at the consulate as saying the shell had also damaged the building.
It was not clear whether the consulate - which is located in the upscale al-Maliki neighborhood near the United States and Chinese embassies - had been deliberately targeted.
A guard at the consulate said he had been on duty when the woman was killed. "I helped carry her to the ambulance. She was limp and covered with a coat," he said.
Rebels trying to overthrow President Bashar Assad have clung to a crescent of territories around the capital for about a year and a half, and have launched several mortar and rocket attacks into the city center in recent months.
A mortar shell landed in the Russian embassy compound in central Damascus on Sunday, wounding three people.
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