NEWS

Parcel bomb defused at Greek embasy

Italian bomb disposal experts on Monday defused an explosive package that was sent to the Greek Embassy in Rome, four days after similar parcel bombs injured staff at two other missions in the Italian capital.

Police said that the bomb deactivated at the Greek Embassy was similar to those that went off last week, injuring two employees at the Swiss and Chilean embassies.

Last week’s attacks were claimed by an Italian anarchist group calling itself the Informal Anarchist Federation (FAI). A note found at the Chilean Embassy said the blast was carried out by FAI’s «Lambros Fountas revolutionary cell,» a reference to a suspected member of the Greek terrorist group Revolutionary Struggle who was killed in a shootout with police in Athens in March.

«The parcel bomb arrived on Friday, but it had not been opened because of the Christmas holiday break,» Michael Cambanis, the Greek ambassador to Italy, told local media. «We saw a suspicious package and we immediately informed the police,» he said.

Embassies strengthened security measures in the wake of last week’s blasts and Italian police had to respond to a number of false alarms at the missions of Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Monaco, Albania, Ukraine and Venezuela.

In November, more than a dozen packages were sent to foreign embassies in Athens and European government officials, forcing Greece to halt international mail. Conspiracy of the Cells of Fire, a Greek urban guerrilla group, claimed responsibility for the attacks which slightly injured one person.

Italian authorities have turned to Greek officials for help in establishing a possible connection between the two incidents. But, speaking to the ANSA news agency yesterday, Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Grigoris Delavekouras said that so far there is no evidence of a link.