Gunmen attacked the Israeli embassy in the Mauritanian capital Nouakchott early on Friday, wounding some people, police and emergency services said. According to Reuters, a club near the embassy, in the centre of Nouakchott, was also hit by gunfire in the attack before the attackers fled.
Two witnesses told The Associated Press that the attack had been carried out by a group of men who shouted "God is Great!" in Arabic before opening fire on the embassy around 2 A.M. An eyewitness said that six men gathered outside a nearby club before pulling out weapons and attacking. Guards at the embassy traded fire with the gunmen, who fled on foot and jumped into a car, he said.
Israel's Ambassador to the country, Boaz Bismuth, said no Embassy staff were hurt in the shooting attack, speaking to Israel Radio in a telephone conversation. Speaking to Reuters, the former journalist said: "I have received many phone calls from Mauritanian friends who are very concerned. That is the only positive thing in a very sad night."
"It only happened a few hours ago, but a shooting on a foreign embassy is a very serious incident."
An Israeli security source left for Mauritania on Friday morning to examine the security arrangements at the embassy, Israel Radio reported.