Iraq forces thwart attack against French embassy: general
Iraqi forces have thwarted an attempt by a suicide bomber to blow up a vehicle by the French embassy in Baghdad, an Iraqi general told AFP on Monday.
"We aborted a car bomb attempt led by a suicide bomber against the French embassy," Brigadier General Ahmed Abu Rheef, the director of internal affairs and security at the interior ministry, said.
Abu Rheef did not give details of when or how the attack was stopped, but said that the group attempting to bomb the embassy was the same as the one that took dozens of worshippers hostage at a Baghdad cathedral.
The October 31 church siege ended in the deaths of 44 worshippers, two priests and five security force members in an attack which sparked an international outcry.
A European diplomat said the interior ministry had informed officials from several countries of the foiled attack at a briefing earlier on Monday.
The ministry told them that the arrests this month of a dozen people suspected of helping to carry out the church attack directly led to the thwarting of the embassy bomb plot.
"During the meeting, someone raised the fact that the arrests which were made prevented a bomb attack from happening at the French embassy," the diplomat said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
© 2010 AFP