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Gun Firing at the U.S. Cultural Center in India

Posted January. 23, 2002 11:55,   


Heavily armed gunmen attacked the U.S. governmental cultural center located in Calcutta, India. 4 security police officers were dead, and 21 were injured.

The incident is attracting wide attention as it occurred in the middle of tension between India and Pakistan after the shooting incident at the Indian Parliament.

Covered with masks, 4 gunmen rode on 2 motorcycles and arrived at the U.S. center at 6:30 a.m. on the day. They soon began shooting at security police officers with AK47 automatic rifles, and fled. No Americans were injured.

The Indian government immediately issued a high alert in the capital, New Delhi, in all American institutions including the U.S. Embassy, and all parts of West Bengal state.

"The attack took place when the police officers were changing shift." said the police and the American Center authorities. They also added, "Fortunately, no staff was there because it was before the Center opened."

Details including the identities of the gunmen have not yet been confirmed, and no group is claiming the attack. The 4 story American Center building accommodates a library, the embassy`s public affairs office, a press section and a wing for cultural programs. The building’s surrounding was often used for anti- American demonstrations.

Jong-DaeHa orionha@donga.com