Saudi Air Force trainee kills 3 at US naval base

WASHINGTON:A member of the Saudi Air Force training to be a pilot opened fire in a classroom building at a US naval Station with a handgun, killing three people and injuring eight others before being shot dead by police with officials investigating whether the shooting was an act of terrorism.

Saudi Air Force trainee kills 3 at US naval base

Flowers and a message near the incident site in Florida. REUTERS

Washington, December 7

A member of the Saudi Air Force training to be a pilot opened fire in a classroom building at a US naval Station with a handgun, killing three people and injuring eight others before being shot dead by police with officials investigating whether the shooting was an act of terrorism.

 The gunman in the deadly shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida on Friday was a second lieutenant in the Saudi Arabian military and was undergoing training to be a pilot.

 He started his training in August 2017 as part of a three-year programme. He was taking classes in basic aviation, initial pilot training and English,  a US military official, said.

Officials are looking into whether the shooting was terror-related as a possible motive.

The SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors jihadist media, identified the shooter as Mohammed al-Shamrani, and said that prior to opening fire he condemned America as a “nation of evil” in an online manifesto on Twitter, according to media reports.

“I’m against evil, and America as a whole has turned into a nation of evil.” “I’m not against you for just being American, I don’t hate you because your freedoms, I hate you because every day you supporting, funding and committing crimes not only against Muslims but also humanity,” he wrote. —  PTI

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