BAGHDAD: A rocket exploded near the US embassy in Baghdad on Wednesday, an Iraqi defence official said, during a visit by US Vice President Dick Cheney to the heavily fortified mission.
Smoke could be seen rising near the US compound shortly after the blast, which was heard at around 6:15 pm (1415 GMT). The Iraqi official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, could not say if there were any casualties.
Cheney's movements during his visit are being kept secret for security reasons, but the vice president later confirmed at at a press conference that "I spent today here basically in our embassy and military headquarters."
Reporters covering Cheney's trip to Iraq were ushered from their workspace here after hearing a muffled boom that rattled the windows.
A spokeswoman for Cheney, Lea Anne McBride, said "his meeting was not disrupted and he was not moved" as a result of the explosion.
Last Thursday, four Asian contractors working for the US embassy were killed in a rocket attack.
Insurgent and militia groups opposed to the ongoing US troop presence in Iraq regularly fire rockets and mortars into the Green Zone, a walled city district that houses the US embassy and Iraqi government.