One person has been killed and nine injured after student wielding a sword and gun attacked a college in Finland on Tuesday.
The student burst into a classroom around midday, pulled out a sword, hacked a woman in the neck then went on to attack others, witnesses said.
Armed police were called to the school and shot the student, who is now in a serious condition in hospital.
One woman was confirmed dead in the attack while another person was seriously hurt, officers said.
A police officer was among the injured, though had only minor wounds.
Investigators said the attacker is a Finnish national, adding that it is too early to know what motivated the rampage.
A witness told Finnish newspaper Iltalehti that the student entered a class with a bag and took out some kind of sword and hit the teacher with it.
A panic broke out among the students and some of them started to throw chairs at the attacker who fled the scene, it said.
The attacker also set off ‘some sort of small firebombs’, a different eyewitness told the Keskisuomalainen newspaper.
Another eyewitness, Roosa Kokkonen, who works in a car garage opposite the college, told Finnish TV channel MTV that a teacher with blood running from her hand came fleeing out of the building.
‘While I was helping the teacher, I started hearing other shouts for help. Students were running away and into my garage,’ Kokkonen told MTV News.
She also told Finnish news agency STT that students described the weapon as ‘a long sword’, and that he ‘started swinging the sword around in the class’.
Police said two people are in serious condition after the attack, and that one police officer was left with minor wounds (pictured, the location of the college)
Police said two of the injured were in a serious condition.
In a tweet, Finnish Prime Minister Antti Rinne described the attack as ‘shocking and utterly reprehensible’.
Police have yet to confirm a motive for the attack, or whether the suspect is a student at the college.
“Officers used firearms during the situation. Police have detained one perpetrator. The injured have been evacuated,” East Finland police said in a statement.
A police spokesperson told AFP that two of the 10 injured remained in a serious condition.
In a tweet, Finnish Prime Minister Antti Rinne described the attack as “shocking and utterly reprehensible”.
Violent crime is relatively rare in Finland, a sparsely populated Nordic nation of 5.4 million people. However two school shootings in the late 2000s caused widespread shock and led to changes in the country’s gun laws.
In 2007, an 18-year-old man killed seven students as well as the headteacher of a high school in the small town of Jokela, southern Finland.
A similar attack the following year at a university of applied sciences in Kauhajoki, western Finland, claimed 10 lives as well as that of the 22-year-old gunman.
In 2017, two people were killed and eight injured in a stabbing attack in the main square of Turku, a city in southwest Finland.
The perpetrator, Abderrahman Bouanane, an asylum seeker, was later sentenced to life imprisonment for murder and attempted murder with terrorist intent.