Wednesday, 5 February 2014
Moscow school shooting: Student held after killing two
An armed student who entered a school in Moscow and shot dead two adults before taking more than 20 teenagers hostage has been arrested. Police said the student had killed one officer and a teacher. Another policeman was shot and injured. The hostages were freed after the student's father went in to the school. Russian President Vladimir Putin has described the incident as "tragic", while Moscow's mayor called for a review of school security. In comments at a meeting with theatre workers in the city of Pskov, Mr Putin suggested improved arts education could help prevent such incidents. "A new generation of spectators with good artistic taste should be brought up - capable of understanding and appreciating theatrical, dramatic and musical arts," he said. "Had we been doing this properly, maybe there would have been no tragedies similar to today's tragedy in Moscow." The gunman was a pupil at School No 263 on the northern outskirts of Moscow. Russian investigators named him as Sergei Gordeyev, and said he was an excellent student who appeared to have had an "emotional breakdown". He was armed with two rifles legally owned by his father. Vladimir Markin, a spokesman for Russia's main investigative agency, said a school security guard had been unable to stop Gordeyev from entering the school when he arrived carrying the weapons. But the guard did manage to hit an alarm before following the student to his classroom, he said. Gordeyev shot dead a geography teacher before locking more than 20 10th grade students - aged about 15 - inside a classroom. He then fired at least 11 shots at police officers who had responded to the alarm, wounding one and killing another, Mr Markin said, in the statement quoted by Russian news agencies. The stand-off was resolved when the student's father was called to the school; wearing a bullet-proof vest, he went into the building to speak to his son. The hostages were freed unharmed and all children and teachers were evacuated from the school. Soon after, the student was disarmed and taken into custody. Moscow's Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said he had "made a decision to conduct a complete review of how our school security system is working, and to take additional steps". chool shootings are incredibly rare in Russia. In the worst ever such incident, Chechen separatists took over a school in Beslan, North Ossetia, holding more than 1,000 people hostage. More than 300 people, mostly children, were killed as security forces stormed the school to end the siege. The latest incident comes amid heightened security across Russia as the country prepares to host the Winter Olympics in Sochi, in the far south, next week. Last month, 34 people were killed in two bomb attacks in the southern city of Volgograd. That incident was blamed on Islamist militants based in the Caucasus republics of Dagestan.