ROME, JUNE 9 -- Terrorists exploded a car bomb near the U.S. Embassy and fired rockets into the American and British embassy compounds today in attacks linked to the economic summit in Venice.
The three attacks occurred within about a 40-minute span. The only casualty reported was an Italian woman on a passing bus, who went into shock and was hospitalized.
The car blast caused panic in the street and in the Hotel Excelsior, where guests, including Americans, were showered with glass while eating breakfast.
Police said that two rockets aimed at the U.S. Embassy were fired from across the Via Veneto from a fifth-floor balcony at the luxury Hotel Ambasciatori. Police said they were searching for an Asian man with a Canadian passport in whose room at the hotel they found a homemade rocket launcher.
Officers said the man checked into the hotel Saturday, the same day a man with the same description rented the car that blew up near the embassy.
A group calling itself the Anti-Imperialist International Brigade claimed responsibility for the attacks in telephone calls to news organizations in Rome and London and threatened further attacks against western targets.
The rocket fired at the British Embassy landed in an ornamental pool. A crude rocket launcher was found outside the compound.