Vienna terrorist shooting attack

Four people have lost their lives in a terrorist attack that left a trail of 22 injured including a police officer who is undergoing treatment.

The terrorist attacks were carried out in 6 locations of the Austrian capital. All indications point to a lone shooter, but authorities are leaving nothing to chance to ensure he acted alone.

Is it a lone gunman theory?

Fejzulai Kujtim, a 20-year-old Austrian man and an Islamic State supporter was the shooter. He had previously done time for 22 months after trying to travel to Syria and join ISIS. Interior Minister Karl Nehammer revealed this information to APA, the state news agency. Within 24 hours of the attack, the Islamic State claimed responsibility for the shooting describing the shooter as a “soldier of the caliphate”. It is not clear whether the group helped plan the attack or merely claim credit from the lone actor.  

Also read: Macron responds to uproar by Muslim communities

Nehammer confirmed to reporters on Tuesday afternoon the findings of the evidence gathered thus far. The unfortunate incident happened right before the coronavirus lockdown. A city-wide search took place during the day as residents were informed to stay indoors. 

Austrian chancellor Sebastian Kurz spoke with CNN detailing how the country will “combat terrorists” and the “ideology behind them.” Kurz revealed an arrest of 14 people who they believe would reveal if they form part of a broader network. The gunman was apparently born in Austria and also hails from Macedonia. Ümit Vural, the president of the Austrian Islamic Faith Community condemned the gunman’s actions as “cowardly” and an “attack on all of us.”

As information unfolded armed forces patrolled Vienna to assist in controlling the security situation. Following the attack, authorities have done away with compulsory school attendance while asking residents to keep off the city center. Fears of other potential gunmen at large still exist. 

The attacks

The first incident was at 8:00 pm at the busy shop and dine district close to the Seitenstettengasse Temple. Other locations identified were Bauernmarkt, Salzgries, Morzinplatz, Graben, and Fleischmarkt. Michael Ludwig, Vienna’s mayor described the shootings as random and aimed at people drinking and dining outside. After the forensics were taken from the scenes of the shootings, police reopened the narrow streets to the public. 

Ph: VP Brothers / Shutterstock.com

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Wanted in Europe, part of the Wanted Worldwide network, is a website in English for expatriates in Europe established in 2006. We cover Europe's news stories that may be of interest to English speaking residents along with tourists as well. Our publication also offers classifieds, photos, information on events, museums, churches, galleries, exhibits, fashion, food, and local travel.
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