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U.S. Embassy in Brussels Caught Up In Violent Street Demo

 / Updated 
Image: Demonstration in Brussels
Protesters from European trade unions during demonstration 'A new path for Europe - Fighting for Investments, Quality Jobs, equality' in the streets of Brussels, Belgium on April 4, 2014. 40,000 went through the street of Europe's capital. Wiktor Dabkowski / Zuma Press

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The U.S. Embassy in Brussels briefly went into a security lockdown Friday after it became caught up in violence at an anti-austerity rally in the Belgian capital.

As riot police battled with protesters in the street, staff were warned to stay inside.

Water cannons were fired at demonstrators and the area was closed off to traffic.

The embassy was not a target of the protest, but the building was briefly put into a security lockdown as a preventative measure, a spokesman told NBC News.

During the protest, rocks were thrown over the embassy walls, slightly injuring a Belgian police officer, but the injuries are not serious, the spokesman said.

Ian Campbell, head of the Scottish Government’s European Union office, which is close to the scene, said he could see some demonstrators ripping up pavement to throw at police.

“They are throwing things at the police. One of the police was injured and taken to hospital in an ambulance,” Campbell added. “Police are using water cannon to push back protesters – they’re getting very wet.”

Shanshan Dong and Tom McArthur of BreakingNews.com contributed to this report.

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