At least 18 killed in blast at Crimea college

Arturo Kim
October 18, 2018

The deadly attack that rocked a Crimea vocational college Wednesday morning was carried out by a fourth-year student, who killed at least 17 of his schoolmates and wounded more than 40 others before killing himself, a top Russian official said. It was not immediately clear if the alleged attacker had detonated the explosive device.

The Investigative Committee said 17 were killed in the attack which took place at around 12 noon (0900 GMT) on the peninsula, which was annexed by Moscow from Ukraine in 2014.

A local ombudswoman told Tass news agency most of the victims were students.

Pupils and staff described scenes of mayhem as panicked pupils tried to flee the building.

Emergency officials had earlier said that the blast was caused by a gas canister explosion.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, who was in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, described the killings as a "tragic event", speaking during a joint news conference with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

"There are bodies everywhere, children's bodies everywhere".

"This is not a terrorist act". They burst in five or 10 minutes after I'd left. "In the 1st floor they opened rooms and killed everyone inside", she continued.

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Kremlin said it was investigating whether it was a terror attack. Troops with armoured personnel carriers were sent to the scene.

A local resident said officials had instructed parents to collect their children from schools and kindergartens in the city for their safety.

The investigators said they will now treat the incident as a mass murder and not as a terrorist attack.

Authorities say that at least ten people have been killed and more than 50 injured as a result of the explosion at a vocational college in the Black Sea city of Kerch. "Started running and throwing explosive devices, bombing everywhere", Grebennikova said at a scene on October 17.

"He wasn't aggressive, he was rather timid", Aksyonov said, speculating that Roslyakov might have "watched some movies" that inspired him to go on the shooting spree.

"I came out and there was dust and smoke, I couldn't understand, I'd been deafened", Yenshina told Reuters. They had assault rifles or I don't know what. "Then they told us to leave the building through the gymnasium". "I saw people without legs, without arms".

Reportedly, Russia heavily restricts who is allowed to own guns. The wall was covered in blood. "Everyone was scared. People were crying". A student at the college who asked not to be named said: "I was in a class when I heard shooting on the first floor".

Sergei Melikov, a deputy chief of the Russian National Guard, said the device was homemade.

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