Attack on school in Finland: one of three children killed dies

Attack on school in Finland: one of three children killed dies
Attack on school in Finland: one of three children killed dies

A 12-year-old boy died and two others were seriously injured this Tuesday (2), after a classmate opened fire at an elementary school in Finland’s capital.

“Today, shortly after 9:00 am (3:00 am Brasília time), a shooting attack took place at a school (…) in which a sixth-grade student died,” said Ilkka Koskimaki, the region’s police chief, at a press conference of press.

He added that two other minors were “severely injured”.

The attack took place at an elementary school in the city of Vantaa, which has almost 800 students aged 7 to 15.

Police arrived at the scene shortly after the attack and the suspect was arrested an hour later in Helsinki. “The arrest was carried out calmly. The suspect was carrying a gun,” police said on their website.

The children were kept in the classrooms and many parents went to school, where they were attended to by the police, according to public broadcaster Yle.

Government Position

Prime Minister Petteri Orpo described the shooting as deeply disturbing and said his thoughts were with the victims and their families, as well as everyone at the school.

According to the Finnish press, a crisis office was established with professionals from the education sector and city hall.

Precedents in the 2000s

The Nordic country suffered two similar tragedies in the early 2000s.

In November 2007, an 18-year-old man opened fire at a high school in Jokela, 50 kilometers north of Helsinki, killing eight people: the principal, the nurse and six students. The attacker committed suicide after the attack.

A year later, in September 2008, a shooting attack occurred at a vocational education center in Kauhajoki (west), perpetrated by a 22-year-old young man, in which 10 people died. The attacker also committed suicide shortly afterwards.

Since then, hundreds of schools have been threatened by similar acts, according to the Journal of Scandinavian Studies in Criminology and Crime Prevention, which points to mental health issues as the main reason for this scourge.

*with information from AFP

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