French Institute in Athens targeted in arson attack

AP News
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Posted: Feb 27, 2017 6:46 AM

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek authorities say an overnight arson attack against the French Institute and French archaeological school in Athens caused minor damage but no injuries.

Police said a car parked on grounds between the two was torched early Monday, with the fire spreading to a second car, while attackers later also smashed windows in the institute and attempted to set fire inside.

The institute conducts cultural and educational programs. In a message posted on its website, French Ambassador Christophe Chantepy said damage was limited "thanks to the rapid intervention of firefighters." There were no immediate claims of responsibility, and it was not clear why the institutions were targeted.

Greece's Foreign Ministry condemned the attack, describing it as a "mindless and criminal act against an institution that is a symbol of Greek-French friendship."