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Brazil school shooting: Eight dead, including six children

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Brazil school shooting: Eight dead, including six children
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Reuters
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At least eight people, including six children and two school officials, were killed in a shooting at a school in Brazil on Wednesday.

São Paulo police said two young men wearing masks entered the Raul Brasil elementary school at 9.30 am local time and fired guns while the children were on their snack break. The pair then shot and killed themselves.

At least 17 other people, mostly children, were also shot and taken to hospital, police said in a written statement. Some of them were said to be in critical condition.

The school located in Suzano, 50km from São Paulo, has around 1,000 primary and secondary students, aged between 11 and 15.

Police said they had not found a motive for the deadly incident.

Marcelo Salles, commander of police in São Paulo state, said that in over three decades of service, he had “never seen anything like this, it was an unspeakably brutal crime.”

Salles added the gunmen, who police said appeared to be between the ages of 20 and 25 years old, used at least one .38-calibre pistol, along with homemade bombs and a crossbow.

Another shooting that took place about 500 metres from the school happened before the killings, but it was not yet clear if the two incidents were linked.

Despite Brazil being one of the world's most violent countries, school shootings are rare. Gun laws are strict in Brazil, but it is not difficult to purchase a weapon illegally.