US Embassy officials in Dublin fear an Al Qaeda inspired attack on the compound and have asked for major security improvements in the Ballsbridge, Dublin building.

But the plan for a massive security fence around the US embassy in Dublin has started a row with the city council.

The new defense perimeter proposed by the US government includes a barrier almost 10 feet  high and an outer cordon of 3 feet-high steel bollards to protect staff from any possible terrorist attacks.

In a statement the Embassy said: “The US and world witnessed the tragedy in Boston and saw firsthand what damage an individual can do. We would be well advised to make sure that it is difficult for intruders to enter the USG grounds.”

It also cited at least 14 European countries that had allowed them to build similar security facilities at US embassies.

“The US government remains concerned about the continued threat of terrorist attacks,  demonstrations, and other violent actions against its citizens and interests overseas," said the embassy in its submission.

“Current information suggests that al-Qaeda, its affiliated organisations, and other terrorist organisations continue to plan terrorist attacks against US interests in multiple regions."

According to the Irish Examiner, Dublin City Council has told the embassy the railing proposed in its planning application was too high and would have to be lowered. The refusal has resulted in an appeal to Bord Pleanála.

The appeal, which is drafted by the US Department of State and embassy officials, cites the Boston bombing and al Qaeda's plans to attack US interests in its need for increased security around the Ballsbridge building. It also makes the case that without the proposed railing the embassy will be "more vulnerable."

The planning application to Dublin City Council showed the embassy wanted to:

* Replace the existing Victorian-style perimeter railing (6-feet high) with a modern railing (10-feet high) on top of the existing low wall;

* A new cordon of steel bollards (each 3 feet high) on the path in front of, and adjacent to, the main entrance;

* New gates and pedestrian entrances, as well as a new guard booth.

The requests were granted permission with the condition that the boundary railing be reduced in height by 2 feet , due to its impact on the nearby residential area. The US government appealed that provision earlier this month, saying the railings would “improve the safety and security of US government employees."