A person who opened fire outside the Cuban Embassy in Washington early Thursday morning was arrested, the authorities said, reporting damage to the building but no injuries.
Secret Service officers were called to the scene at about 2:15 a.m., after receiving reports of gunfire by the embassy, a spokeswoman for the Secret Service said. One person, who was not identified, was arrested on charges of being in possession of an unregistered firearm, unregistered ammunition, assault with the intent to kill, and possession of a “high capacity feed device,” she said.
The Metropolitan Police Department referred questions to the Secret Service, which it said was leading the investigation.
No staff members were injured in the incident, the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement, and the Secret Service said no injuries were reported at the scene. But the ministry said that bullets had caused “material damage” to the building, which stands in an expensive area near luxury apartments, about three miles from the National Mall.
The ministry also said that “an assault weapon” was used, but that Cuban officials had no information about the identity of the person who fired the gun. On Twitter, the ministry posted photos of a shattered lamp and a wall and columns pocked by bullets.
“The government of Cuba is waiting for the correspondent investigation by U.S. authorities on the identity and motives of the individual who carried out this aggression and the circumstances surrounding the event,” the ministry said.
Cuba’s diplomatic mission has security in place “to face threats against its staff and its premises,” the statement said. It also said that host nations had an obligation “to adopt appropriate steps to protect the premises of diplomatic missions accredited to their country” against intrusions or damage.
The incident “did not impact Secret Service protective operations,” the spokeswoman for the agency said. “The Secret Service is working with appropriate partner law enforcement agencies to investigate the incident.”
The United States formally re-established diplomatic relations with Cuba in 2015 under the Obama administration. At the time, President Barack Obama had declared that the two nations were ready to reopen embassies in each others’s capitals and start a “new chapter” of engagement after more than 50 years of estrangement.