Fire at Chinese Consulate in San Francisco Investigated as Arson

China calls for better U.S. protection of diplomats

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Stephen Lam / Reuters

Wang Chuan, a spokesman for the Chinese consulate in San Francisco, points to a damaged door during a news conference after an unidentified person set fire in San Francisco, California January 2, 2014.

Federal officials claim the fire that charred the entrance of China’s consulate in San Francisco on Wednesday was started deliberately, prompting calls from Beijing for the U.S. to better protect foreign diplomats.

The FBI stated that the incident, in which no one was harmed, was being investigated as arson, but not as an act of terrorism. Wang Chuan, spokesman for the consulate, said that surveillance footage showed a person pouring two buckets of petrol on the building before setting it ablaze.

“We hope that the U.S. takes all necessary measures to provide adequate protection to the consular personnel and properties and bring the culprits to justice as soon as possible,” Chuan added.