At least 19 people were killed and dozens injured at a college in the Black Sea region of Crimea on Wednesday when a student went through the building shooting at fellow pupils before killing himself, Russian law enforcement officials said.
Eighteen-year-old Vladislav Roslyakov turned up at the college in the city of Kerch on Wednesday afternoon carrying a firearm and then began shooting, investigators said. His body was later found in the college with what they said were self-inflicted gunshot wounds.
There were no immediate clues as to his motive in mounting such an attack, which recalled similar shooting sprees carried out by students in U.S. schools.
Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 , prompting international condemnation and Western sanctions, but since then there have been no major outbreaks of violence on the peninsula.
Many of the victims from Wednesday’s attacks were teenage students who suffered shrapnel and bullet wounds.
Pupils and staff described scenes of mayhem as panicked pupils tried to flee the building. They said the attack had started with an explosion, followed by more blasts, and a hail of gunfire.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, at a meeting in the southern Russian resort of Sochi with his Egyptian counterpart, declared a moment’s silence for the victims. “This is a clearly a crime,” he said. “The motives will be carefully investigated.”