ATHENS, Greece — Unknown attackers fired dozens of bullets at the facade of the Israeli embassy in Athens without causing any injury in a pre-dawn, drive-by attack Friday on one of the Greek capital’s best-guarded buildings.
Police said 54 bullet casings from two AK-47 assault rifles – a weapon favoured by Greek anarchist militant groups – were recovered outside the embassy, on a busy road junction that was closed to traffic for hours.
Nobody claimed responsibility for the attack, which occurred long before the building opened for business.
Police said ballistic tests showed that the weapons used in the attack were the same ones employed in a similar shooting outside the German ambassador’s residence in Athens a year ago. A small left-wing terrorist group called “Popular Fighters” had claimed responsibility for that attack, which caused no injury.
Officials in Athens condemned Friday’s shooting, stressing it would not affect the country’s close ties with Israel.
“The Greek government is fully determined to ensure the protection of all diplomatic missions in Greece,” a Foreign Ministry statement said. “Of course, particularly strong security and protection measures are in force at the Israeli embassy.”
Police said the attackers were riding on at least one motorbike, and escaped after the attack, leaving the building pock-marked with bullet holes.