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Gunman Fires Shots at New Democracy Party Headquarters in Athens

A gunman fired shots at the headquarters of the ruling New Democracy party early today near central Athens, with one bullet reaching the office used by Prime Minister Antonis Samaras. No injuries were reported.

Nine casings from a Kalashnikov assault rifle were found outside the offices of the party, which is the main partner in the coalition government headed by Samaras, according to a statement from the Hellenic Police in Athens. One bullet was found in the office of the party’s president, Samaras, the police said. The attack occurred around 3 a.m.

“Nobody can terrorize democracy, New Democracy, the prime minister,” party secretary Manolis Kefalogiannis said in an e-mailed statement. “Luckily there were no victims. But this act of violence must be condemned by all.”

The incident came after a spate of attacks on political targets. Greek government spokesman Simos Kedikoglou condemned a fire-bomb attack on his brother’s house on Jan. 12 in central Athens. That followed similar attacks early on Jan. 11 in which unidentified perpetrators threw makeshift gas-canister bombs into the homes of five Greek journalists working for national media. No injuries were reported.

An anarchist group claimed responsibility for the Jan. 11 attacks, saying it wanted to protest coverage of the country’s financial crisis seen as sympathetic to the government, according to NET TV.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for today’s attack. Police said they are investigating whether a burnt, stolen car found near the site was related to the shooting.

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