Sirens around the Czech Republic will commemorate Ostrava shooting victims on December 17

Sirens will sound all over the Czech Republic at noon on December 17 for 20 seconds to commemorate the victims of today's shooting in the Ostrava Teaching Hospital


Written by ČTK Published on 11.12.2019 09:28:44 (updated on 11.12.2019) Reading time: 2 minutes

Ostrava, North Moravia, Dec 10 (CTK) – Sirens will sound all over the Czech Republic at noon on December 17 for 20 seconds to commemorate the victims of today’s shooting in the Ostrava Teaching Hospital, Prime Minister Andrej Babis has said.

He said the sirens will be ringing like after a similar fatal shooting incident in Uhersky Brod, south Moravia, in February 2015.

A 42-year-old man from the vicinity of Opava, north Moravia, shot six people dead and injured another three patients in a waiting room of the Ostrava Teaching Hospital’s outpatient traumatology ward this morning. One of the injured is in a critical condition.

Babis said the government, the Moravia-Silesia Region and the Ostrava City Hall want to give 300,000 crowns to the families of each of the victims.

“At a meeting with the interior minister, the [regional] governor and [Ostrava] mayor, we have agreed to contribute 300,000 crowns to the victims’ families, and that the government will decide at its next meeting on December 16 on how the victims’ memory will be honoured,” Babis said.

The financial aid to the families still needs approval from the government, the given region and the Ostrava City Assembly.

Babis also mentioned the accident in which 13 miners died in the CSM coal mine elsewhere in Moravia-Silesia one year ago. He said that like then, he expects a public fund raising campaign to be launched for people to support the Ostrava victims’ families.

The families’ members have been provided with psychological aid, but some victims still remain unidentified, Babis said.

In the afternoon, the Ostrava hospital complex has been reopened to the public, except for the outpatient clinic where the shooting took place on the 3rd floor.

The shooter shot himself dead in Dehylov, a village situated some eight kilometres from the hospital, before the police arrival.

According to media, the shooter was a construction worker who was ill from mid-October and asserted that he was suffering from a serious disease.

His employer said that the man was on sick leave in the past two weeks.

The police intervention against the shooter involved the elite rapid reaction unit URNA, apart from all regional police units such as the riot, road and criminal squads, police spokeswoman Pavla Jirouskova told CTK.

URNA is a special unit designated mainly for fighting terrorism. Subordinated directly to the police president, URNA operates nationwide. Its members intervene against terrorists and kidnappers, dangerous perpetrators of organised crime and perpetrators of the most serious deliberate crimes, mainly during their arresting.

A special information phone line has been established in connection with today’s tragedy.

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