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Finland: 12-Year-Old opens fire at school, killing one

April 3, 2024

In a tragic incident on Tuesday morning, a 12-year-old student unleashed gunfire at a secondary school in southern Finland, resulting in the death of one student and severe injuries to two others, as reported by the police. The shooting occurred at Viertola school, a prominent educational institution in Vantaa, just outside Helsinki, with approximately 800 students.

Upon receiving a distress call at 09:08 am, heavily armed police swiftly cordoned off the school premises. Shockingly, both the assailant and the victims were revealed to be 12 years old. Police confirmed that one student died instantly from gunshot wounds, while the other two sustained serious injuries.

The firearm used in the shooting was a registered handgun licensed to a relative of the suspect, according to Chief of Police Ilkka Koskimäki from the Eastern Uusimaa Police Department. Later in the day, authorities apprehended the suspect in the Helsinki area, where he confessed to the shooting during initial police interrogation. However, the motive behind the attack remains unclear, and investigations are ongoing, with the case classified as a murder and two attempted murders.

Finnish President Alexander Stubb and Prime Minister Petteri Orpo expressed their condolences to the victims’ families, emphasizing their shock at the tragic incident. Orpo further pledged a thorough review to prevent such occurrences in the future.

The incident has reignited discussions on gun laws in Finland, a country with a significant number of licensed firearms despite its small population. Following previous school shootings in 2007 and 2008, Finland implemented stricter regulations, including raising the minimum age for firearm ownership and enhancing background checks for gun license applicants. However, this recent tragedy underscores the persistent challenges in ensuring safety and preventing gun violence, particularly among young individuals.

Also read:

Iowa school shooting: 17-year-old kills sixth-grader, injures 5

United States: Guns on campus controversy

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