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Libyan in Milan bomb attack

Bomber seriously hurt, Carabiniere medicated at barracks

12 October, 14:54

(ANSA) - Rome, October 12 - A Libyan man tried to bring a bomb into a Carabinieri barracks in Milan Monday but let it off at the entrance when he saw guards pointing their weapons at him.

The Milan resident, 34-year-old Mohamed Game, has never been named in any terrorist probe, Milan Prosecutor Armando Spataro told a press conference.

Spataro said it was ''a very serious incident'' but ''should not be emphasised''.

The police were giving ''maximum'' priority to the case, he said. An Italian intelligence source told ANSA: ''As far as we know it was an isolated act by a person who has no record (of terrorist activity)''.

Italian Police Chief Antonio Manganelli noted that Italian investigators were experts on terrorism and would be ''very well equipped'' if Game case turned out to have links to Islamist cells.

Game lost a hand, was blinded in an eye and suffered severe burns to the face when he activated the device he was carrying in a tool-box.

A 20-year-old Carabiniere was hit in the hand, suffering ''very slight'' injuries, and was medicated on the spot.

Some of the Carabinieri based in Milan are part of the Italian contingent in Afghanistan but the commander of the Santa Barbara barracks ''categorically denied'' reports that Game shouted something about Afghanistan.

MILAN RESIDENT SAID 'SOMETHING IN ARABIC'.

Game was heard saying ''something in Arabic'' when he saw the machine guns being levelled at him, police said.

Investigators stressed they had found nothing so far to connect Game to a plan foiled last year to bomb the barracks in southwest Milan.

Two Moroccan nationals were arrested in December in connection with that plot, in which they were heard on wiretaps discussing a serious of Milanese targets.

Security has since been stepped up at the barracks, a factor which may have helped foil Monday's attack.

Milan Mayor Letizia Moratti praised the ''promptness'' of the guards.

Bomb experts said the device used by the Libyan appeared to have been made with explosives from large fireworks.

Spataro said it contained nitrate, a common bomb-making ingredient.

An unspecified amount of the explosive had failed to go off, Spataro said.

Game, who was arrested in hospital, has lived in Milan since 2003 on a valid permit and has a family with an Italian woman, Spataro said.

He was accused of receiving stolen goods in 2007.

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