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Terror has once again broken out in Europe, sending German city Munich into lockdown following a mass shooting in a shopping centre.
Ten people are dead, including the attacker, and 21 others were injured. Children are among the killed and wounded. Eyewitnesses say they saw the attacker deliberately targeting helpless young children when he began unleashing on diners at a McDonald’s restaurant.
Police were investigating a fake Facebook advertisement offering free food at the exact McDonald’s the attack took place. It is uncertain whether the killer posted the ad to lure children into the fast food restaurant.
"I hear like an alarm and boom, boom, boom, I heard, and then I saw all the injured. I was back to back with him, I was in the bathroom with my kid, and I only saw him shoot directly into the faces of children," Lauretta Januze, who was with her young son at the time, told CNN.
"And he's still killing the children. The children were sitting to eat. They can't run."
She said she heard the gunman yell, "Allahu Akbar" (God is great). "I know this because I'm Muslim. I hear this and I only cry."
People were urged to avoid public spaces. A state of emergency was declared in the city, which is the capital of Bavaria and has a population of more than 1.88 million.
— WPEC CBS12 News (@CBS12) July 22, 2016
The mass shooting follows a string of attacks including the attack in the southern French city of Nice on 14 July and bombings in neighbouring France and Belgium.
What we know so far:
- The shooting attack began shortly before 4pm local time (2am AEST) at a McDonald's restaurant and continued on a nearby street, then to at the Olympia-Einkaufszentrum shopping centre, ABC News reports
- Munich Police confirmed 10 people are dead, including teenagers and the lone gunman
- Sixteen people are still hospital in a "serious condition", including children
- Bild, a German newspaper, is reporting that the father of the gunman is being interviewed by police, and their residence being searched
- The suspect allegedly lived in the district of Maxvorstadt
- The attacker was an 18-year-old with dual German-Iranian citizenship and a long-term resident of Munich. His body was discovered at 8.30pm local time. His motive is not fully clear yet, police say
- Police are also investigating a fake Facebook advertisement that was offering free food at the McDonald's where the attack too place. It's unclear whether it was posted by the killer
- A video posted on social media shows a man dressed in black walking away from the McDonald's while firing repeatedly on civilians