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Eight dead as gunman opens fire in Russian university

Students were seen jumping from windows of a Russian university today after a teenage gunman held a key building under siege.

Shots were heard at Perm State University in Russia‘s Ural mountains and initial reports said eight were killed and more than 32 were wounded.

A lone gunman was seen walking into the building holding a clearly visible firearm, with reports later saying the shooter had been killed by police.

The unidentified perpetrator used a non-lethal gun, according to the Perm State University press service. Students and staff of the university locked themselves in rooms, and the university urged those who could leave the campus to do so. 

It is the second mass shooting at an education facility in Russia this year. 

Pictured: Students are seen jumping out of windows to escape a shooter at Perm State University in Russia’s Ural mountains on Monday

Pictured: A still from a video showing a man holding a firearm walking towards a building

Pictured: A photo allegedly showing the gunman posing with a firearm and ammunition

Pictured: The alleged gunman walking towards a building in footage shared on Monday (left) and posing with a firearm and giving the finger to the camera (right)

Videos circulating on social media showed students throwing belongings from windows from buildings on campus before jumping to flee the shooter.

State media played amateur footage reportedly taken during the attack showing an individual dressed in black tactical clothing, including a helmet, carrying a weapon and walking through the campus. 

‘When the people saw the shooter and heard the shots, some managed to leave the building, others locked themselves in classrooms,’ said one eyewitness account.

Many students were seen jumping after climbing out of a second floor window.

The regional heath ministry said among those wounded were injuries both from the shooting and from trying to escape the building. 

The university flashed a message to frightened staff and students saying: ‘If you are currently inside the university, please, try to shut yourself from inside the room, and stay inside.

‘If you are on the campus, please leave if possible. If you are on the way to the university – TURN BACK’

The gunman shot a security guard on the way into the university, and a call to emergency services went unanswered, it was claimed.

The gunman – named in some reports as Timur Bekmansurov, 18, a student – was later reported to have been overpowered.

The university said he was detained alive but seriously wounded, but other accounts said he had been killed. These were not immediately confirmed.

In messages sent by the suspect before the siege, he was quoted saying he ‘liked causing pain to people’.

He described himself as ‘unstoppable’. 

Pictured: A man dressed in black is shown walking through a courtyard towards a building

Pictured: A person is seen lying on the ground outside the university buildings

Left: A man dressed in black is shown walking through a courtyard towards a building. Right: A person is seen lying on the ground outside the university buildings

Pictured: A person receives treatment on the ground at the university, with the floor below covered in blood

Pictured: A person receives treatment on the ground at the university, with the floor below covered in blood

‘I could have fooled every psychiatrist,’ he said of a test to get his gun license.

‘At least I will feel alive for the last ten minutes of my life,’ he wrote.

‘I detest myself as much as I test all of you.’

He said: ‘I want to leave as much pain in the world as I can so everyone I can’t kill will remember this day forever….

‘I will do all in my power to kill as many as I can. Only a few of you deserve to live.’ 

Suspected gunman Bekmansurov had studied at the university for 10 days since the start of the new academic year. He was in the Law Faculty and was training to become a forensic expert. 

Later reports said the shooter had died from police gunshot wounds.

Some reports said that eight had died in the university, but the Russian Investigative Committee so far confirmed five.

Fleets of ambulances arrived at the campus.

The shooter had been armed with a Turkish-made 12-caliber Huglu rifle.

Pictured: Police block the road near the scene after a gunman opened fire at the Perm State University in Perm, Russia September 20, 2021

Pictured: Police block the road near the scene after a gunman opened fire at the Perm State University in Perm, Russia September 20, 2021

A car of Russia's National Guard is seen at the scene after a gunman opened fire at the Perm State University in Perm, Russia September 20, 2021

A car of Russia’s National Guard is seen at the scene after a gunman opened fire at the Perm State University in Perm, Russia September 20, 2021

His messages suggest he had been planning a massacre for many months, but only recently decided to carry it out at the university. 

The last such deadly attack took place in May 2021, when a 19-year-old gunman opened fire in his old school in the central Russian city of Kazan, killing nine people.

Investigators said that man suffered from a brain disorder. But he was deemed fit to receive a license for the semi-automatic shotgun he used in the attack.

On the day of that attack – one of the worst in recent Russian history – President Vladimir Putin called for a review of gun control laws.

In November 2019, a 19-year-old student in the far eastern town of Blagoveshchensk opened fire at his college, killing one classmate and injuring three other people before shooting and killing himself.

In October 2018, another teenage gunman killed 20 people at a Kerch technical college in Crimea, the peninsula Russia annexed from Ukraine in 2014.

He was shown in camera footage wearing a similar T-shirt to Eric Harris, one of the killers in the 1999 Columbine High School shooting in the US, which left 13 people dead.

The Crimea shooter was able to legally obtain a gun licence after undergoing marksmanship training and being examined by a psychiatrist.

The country’s FSB security service says it has prevented dozens of armed attacks on schools in recent years.

In February 2020 the FSB said it had detained two teenagers on suspicion of plotting an attack on a school in the city of Saratov with weapons and homemade explosives.

Authorities have claimed that young Russians are being increasingly exposed to negative influences online, especially from the West. 

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