One killed, 3 wounded in Finland school shooting

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TUUSULA, Finland, Nov 7 (Reuters) At least one person was killed and three injured in a school shooting in southern Finland today, hours after a video was posted on YouTube predicting a massacre at school.

One of those shot was the principal of the school, said Tuula Panula, spokeswoman for the Tuusula municipality, some 60 km (40 miles) from the Finnish capital Helsinki.

The video, set to hard-driving music, shows a still photo of a school that appears to be Jokela High School, where the shooting occurred. The photo then fragments to reveal a red-tinted photo of a man pointing a gun at the camera.

It is entitled ''Jokela High School Massacre - 11/7/2007'' and was posted by a user called Sturmgeist89. ''Sturmgeist'' means storm spirit in German.

A teacher at the scene told Reuters the gunman was a pupil at the school.

''It felt unreal, a pupil I have taught myself was running towards me, screaming, a pistol in his hand,'' teacher Kim Kiuru, who was teaching his grade 8 class when the shooting took place, told Reuters at the scene.

''He (the gunman) was moving systematically through the school hallways, knocking on the doors and shooting through the doors,'' added Kiuru, who said he helped his pupils escape the building through the classroom windows.

Junior Constable Olli Laine said police had surrounded the building, which houses both a middle school and high school, and were evacuating students.

Despite having the third-largest per capita ratio of handgun ownership in the world, violent incidents are rare at Finnish schools.

According to Finnish media, there have been four stabbings at schools since 1999, but none of these caused fatalities.

The last major attack in the country came in 2002, when a young man killed including himself and six others,in a bomb blast at a shopping mall in Helsinki.


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