Moscow — Russian officials said a gunman attacked a school in Kazan, Russia, killing eight people (seven second-year junior high school students and a teacher) and injuring 21 on Tuesday morning.
Russian media said some students were able to escape the building during the attack, while others were trapped inside. The students eventually evacuated to a nearby kindergarten and were gathered by their families. After the attack, dozens of ambulances lined up at the entrance to the school and police had access to the fenced building.
Police have launched a criminal investigation into the shooting.
Rustam Minnikhanov, governor of the Republic of Tatarstan, the capital of Kazan, said four boys and three girls (all in eighth grade) were killed in the shooting. Minnihanov’s press later said the teacher was also killed.
“The terrorist has been arrested, (he) is 19 years old. The gun is registered under his name. No other accomplices have been established and an investigation is underway,” Minnihanov visited the school. After that, he added that his safety had been restored.
Officials said additional security measures were immediately implemented at all schools in Kazan, a city 700 kilometers (430 miles) east of Moscow. They also announced a mourning day on Wednesday to honor the victims of the shooting.
Twenty-one were injured and hospitalized after the attack, 18 of whom were in the intensive care unit, according to Tatarstan health officials.
The Russian state RIA Novosti news agency previously reported that 11 people were killed in the Kazan shooting. There was no immediate way to adjust for different deaths.
Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed his condolences to the victims’ families, hoping for a quick recovery of those injured in the shooting and ordering the government to provide all the support it needs.
Putin also ordered Russia’s National Guard Commander, Victor Zorotov, to revise regulations on the types of weapons allowed for civilian use in the light of attacks.
The Russian Ministry of Emergency sent a plane equipped with doctors and medical equipment to Kazan, and Health Minister Mikhail Murashko and Education Minister Sergei Kravtsov also headed to the area.
School shootings are relatively rare in Russia, but in recent years there have been several violent attacks on schools, most of which are carried out by students.