Gunman Opens Fire at Czech Hospital, Kills Six People

Published December 10th, 2019 - 09:53 GMT
The gunman allegedly shot people at close range as they sat waiting in the trauma ward of the Faculty Hospital in Ostrava. (AFP/ File Photo)
The gunman allegedly shot people at close range as they sat waiting in the trauma ward of the Faculty Hospital in Ostrava. (AFP/ File Photo)
The gunman opened fire at a hospital in the city of Ostrava in the Czech Republic.

A gunman opened fire today in a hospital in the Czech Republic killing six people and seriously injuring two others.

The suspect entered the building at around 7am this morning in the eastern Czech city of Ostrava, police said.

Officers are still hunting for the gunman and have asked the public for help in identifying him.

Police published a photo of the suspect online, showing a man in a red casual jacket. 

The shooting happened around 7am this morning in the University hospital in the city, located 220 miles east of Prague.

Patients and staff have been evacuated from the clinic and police are boosting security across the country.

A witnesses described the moment the shooter walked in and began firing before reloading his weapon. 

She told TV Nova: 'He came into the waiting room and started firing at the people waiting there before the surgery. When he fired the magazine, he reloaded the gun and fired again.' 

The number of people killed was initially said to be four with two injured, but that figure quickly rose to six dead, Health Minister Adam Vojtech told Czech Radio today. 

Four victims were pronounced died at the scene and two other succumbed to the injuries they suffered, local media reported. 

Two people are said to have been injured, according to police, but that number could also rise to 10, local media reported.

There has been no suggestion by authorities on the possible motive for the attack. 

Czech police said they were strengthening security around 'selected soft targets' across the rest of the country as a result of the shooting.

The suspect was about 5ft 9in 180 (centimetres) feet tall, Czech TV reported. 

He is said be travelling in a silver-grey Renault Laguna and was described as 'probably armed' and dangerous.

The DNES daily reported on its website that the shooting took place at the trauma ward of the hospital on the third floor.

Although Prime Minister Andrej Babis told Czech public television the shooting took place in a waiting room. He added he is heading for the site today.

Video footage and pictures published by local public radio appeared to show police arresting a person at the site but police did not immediately confirm that it was the suspect.

Police also tweeted a picture of a man they say could have been an important witness to the shooting.

The hospital was evacuated and armed police have been working to secure the surrounding areas.

It was the worst shooting in the Czech Republic since a man shot eight people dead at a restaurant in Uhersky Brod in 2015.

This article has been adapted from its original source.

© Associated Newspapers Ltd.

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