Attack on U.S. embassy in Syria halted in progress

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Guards in charge of security at the United States Embassy in Damascus, Syria have stopped a "terrorist operation" just outside the embassy's walls, according to a statement by the Syrian government. Several other areas near other embassies located in Rawda, Syria have also been shut down in order to secure the surrounding areas.

Reports say that four gunmen exited two vehicles, parking them just outside the embassy and began shooting at guards inside the embassy and throwing grenades at them. The guards then began firing upon the gunmen killing three and wounding one taking him into custody. At least two of the terrorists were attempting to hide in buildings near the embassy, but security officers killed them after catching up to them.

During the exchange of gunfire, one of the vehicles used by the terrorists exploded and according to the Syrian Government, was detonated by the terrorists. The second vehicles also exploded, but reports say the vehicle was in the control of the Syrian security force before it too blew up.

"Three terrorists were killed and one was wounded. [The attack was a] terrorist operation targeting the US embassy," said Gen. Bassam Abdel Majid of Syria's Interior Ministry.

None of the gunmen were able to enter the embassy and there is no claim of responsibility as of yet.

Reports also state that at least one Syrian Security officer and two Iraqis were killed and at least seven technicians located at a nearby workshop were injured including a local police officer. One diplomat from China was also injured when he was hit by debris from the blast while standing on the roof of a garage located at the Chinese Embassy. No Americans were killed or injured during the battle.

An anonymous senior official of Syria's Baath party stated the attacks were planned by government intelligence from within the United States.