Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Death toll in Texas school shooting rises

A gunman on Tuesday killed at least 19 children and two adults in an elementary school attack in the southwestern US state of Texas, one of the deadliest mass shootings at a school in the nation’s history.

The attack took place in the city of Uvalde, where authorities said the 18-year-old gunman first shot his grandmother, then crashed a car and entered the school, shooting before being killed by law enforcement.

Sergeant Eric Estrada of the Texas Department of Public Safety told Nation World News that officers saw the gunman, who was wearing body armor, left the crashed car with a rifle, and that officers “planted” the suspect, but he was still was able to attend school. ,

In the chaotic minutes and hours following the attack, the extent of the massacre was unclear, with some shooting victims being taken to local hospitals, and the number of killed and wounded was difficult to confirm.

Lidia Martínez Delgado wrote on Facebook that her niece, Eva Miralles, was a school teacher and was among those killed.

“I am outraged that this shooting continues,” Martínez Delgado said in a statement. “These kids are innocent. The rifle should not be readily available to everyone. This is my hometown, a small community of less than 20,000. I never thought this would happen especially with loved ones.”

The school district’s superintendent, Hal Harrell, told reporters that bereavement counseling services were being provided for students and that the remaining few days of the school year had been canceled.

“My heart is broken today,” Harrell said. “We are a small community, and we will need your prayers to get through this.”

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A spokesman said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is “deeply shocked and saddened by the heinous mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. It is particularly heartbreaking that most of the victims are children.”

US President Joe Biden spoke to the nation late Tuesday, offering condolences to the families of the victims, questioning why mass shootings are so common in the country and urging lawmakers to support a “commonsense gun law.”

“I’m sick and tired,” he said. “We have to act.”

Biden said he learned of the shooting when he was returning from a trip to Asia.

“What surprised me was that this type of mass shooting is rare anywhere else in the world,” Biden said. “Why? They have mental health problems. They have domestic disputes in other countries. They have people who are lost. But this type of mass shooting never happens with the same frequency as it does in America.” Why? Why are we willing to live with this genocide? Why do we allow this to happen?”

Tuesday’s attack was the deadliest school shooting in Texas and the deadliest elementary school shooting since the 2012 attack on Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, which killed 26 people, 20 of them school children.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott identified the gunman as Salvador Ramos.

“Texans across the state grieve for the victims of this senseless crime and the Uvalde community,” Abbott said in a statement.

Abbott said that he and his wife, Cecilia, “mourn this horrific loss and urge all Texans to come together to show their unwavering support to all those who are suffering.”

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US Senator Ted Cruz from Texas echoed similar sentiments. “Today is a dark day. We are all completely sick and heartbroken,” he said in a statement. “We have seen a lot of these shoots. No parent should go through the pain of burying their child. We need to come together as a nation and support Uvalde as he tries to recover from this devastating loss.”

Both Abbott and Cruz were among a group of Republican figures scheduled to appear in Houston on Friday at the annual convention of the National Rifle Association, the gun rights group that has opposed gun control measures.

The school has an enrollment of approximately 600 students in the second, third and fourth grades and sits in a residential neighborhood of mostly modest homes. The city has a population of about 16,000 people and is the seat of government for Uvalde County. It is approximately 135 kilometers (84 mi) west of San Antonio and about 120 kilometers (75 mi) north of the border with Mexico.

Texas has been the scene of several mass shootings over the past five years. A year before the Santa Fe school shootings in 2018, a gunman at a Texas church killed more than two dozen people during a Sunday service in the small town of Sutherland Springs. In 2019, another gunman killed 23 people in a racist attack at a Walmart in El Paso.

Some information for this report has been received from The Associated Press and Reuters.

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This article is republished from – Voa News – Read the – original article.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Deskhttps://nationworldnews.com
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