Explosion occurs outside of U.S. consular office in southern Iraqi city

Saturday, September 11th 2004, 9:43 am
By: News On 6

BASRA, Iraq (AP) _ A bomb exploded Saturday outside a former Saddam Hussein-era palace that houses a U.S. consular office, killing at least one person and wounding two others, police and witnesses said.

Police Capt. Mushtaq Taleb said the bomb targeted a car owned by the National Security Co., a local security company, killing the driver and wounding two people who were in the street.

``The attack occurred at the entrance of the (former presidential) palace that leads to the U.S. consulate,'' Taleb said. The explosion was a few yards from a cement anti-blast wall, he said.

The blast walls absorbed the brunt of the blast, preventing significant damage to the building, witnesses said. The charred corpse could be seen in a car outside the building.

The explosion occurred just after 4 p.m. at the Basra Palace, which is now a British base, a British military spokeswoman said while speaking on condition of anonymity.