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12-year-old student opens fire at a school in Finland, killing 1 and wounding 2 others

17 Comments
By JARI TANNER

A 12-year-old student opened fire at a secondary school in southern Finland on Tuesday morning, killing one and seriously wounded two other students, police said. The suspect was later arrested.

Heavily armed police cordoned off the lower secondary school, with some 800 students, in the city of Vantaa, just outside the capital, Helsinki, after receiving a call about a shooting incident at 09:08 a.m.

Police said both the suspect and the victims were 12 years old. The suspect was arrested in the Helsinki area later Tuesday with a handgun in his possession, police said.

Police told a news conference that one of the wounded students had died. The other two were seriously wounded, said Chief of Police Ilka Koskimaki from the Eastern Uusima Police Department.

Finnish Prime Minister Petteri Orpo posted on X that he was “deeply shocked” over the shooting.

In the past decades, Finland has witnessed two major deadly school shootings.

In November 2007, a 18-year-old student armed with a semi-automatic pistol opened fire at the premises of the Jokela high school in Tuusula, southern Finland, killing nine people. He was found dead with self-inflicted wounds.

Less than a year later, in September 2008, a 22-year-old student shot and killed 10 people with a semi-automatic pistol at a vocational college in Kauhajoki, southwestern Finland, before fatally shooting himself.

In the Nordic nation of 5.6 million, there are more than 1.5 million licensed firearms and about 430,000 license holders, according to the Finnish Interior Ministry. Hunting and gun-ownership have long traditions in the sparsely-populated northern European country.

Responsibility for granting permits for ordinary firearms rests with local police departments.

Following the school shootings in 2007 and 2008, Finland tightened its gun laws by raising the minimum age for firearms ownership and giving police greater powers to make background checks on individuals applying for a gun license.

© 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

17 Comments
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It can happen anywhere even in the highly praised education utopia called Finland!

-8 ( +4 / -12 )

SeigiToday  05:18 pm JST

It can happen anywhere even in the highly praised education utopia called Finland!

Yes, very true. Like Switzerland, Finland has quite open gun possession laws, as people like to hunt but a licence and background checks, etc. are required. Finlans has a pretty low crime rate and a high reporting rate and gun violence rate so this is an anomaly.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

There will always be random nutters, even in places like Finland.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I give you a more generelized view on this example issue. We are turning into an era of war and war economy. The country , also new in NATO and under rising threats from Russia, has still the highest ranking in happiness index , but isn't an exception when many people get more and more war or weapon oriented or prepare against conflicts or try to violently solve their problems. Especially younger people will now more often fill the news columns, because they are psychologically still unstable and no one teaches them good and peaceful behaviors and manners anymore. In a short formula, they can handle generative AI and develop you a python program in a few minutes, but real-life conflicts and problems they now solve the old hard and brutal way. In fact it is a quite lost generation due to corona and emerging cold or hot war issues, of course producing then nothing else than next lost generations too.

-13 ( +0 / -13 )

Not much detail to comment on, yet.

With an eye on national security and defence, Finland has recently been interested in encouraging more gun ownership and proficiency in its citizenship, especially given its misbehaving neighbours, Russia. I'm not sure that extends to 12-year-olds, though.

I hope the injured make speedy and full recoveries.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/feb/19/finland-to-open-more-shooting-ranges-amid-russia-threat?ref=upstract.com

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Had this type of incident happened in the US there would be HUNDREDS more comments, goes on to show you where ever there are guns in the world these types of incidents will happen. Its not that guns kill but people kill who have access to guns!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

METATTOKYOApr. 2  05:51 pm JST

SeigiToday  05:18 pm JST

It can happen anywhere even in the highly praised education utopia called Finland!

Yes, very true. Like Switzerland, Finland has quite open gun possession laws, as people like to hunt but a licence and background checks, etc. are required. Finlans has a pretty low crime rate and a high reporting rate and gun violence rate so this is an anomaly.

There's one big word in this - responsibility. Here in America for decades and decades we've had this shrieking greedy loudmouth lunkhead running the NRA screaming, 'Buy them before they're banned! I will save you! Blaaaaaaaa-aaaaa-aaaaahhhhh!!!!'. That and a lot of scummy phony armies of thugs who aren't mature enough to join a real disciplined military but are always finding somebody 'different' to hate and an excuse to do so.

Screaming lies about immigrants, screaming lies about Blacks, screaming lies about Jews (always the Jews). screaming screaming screaming! And of course the lying sassybrat Caligula racist Antichrist known as 'Donald Trump' is always promoting violence and hatred.

Now of course this is not so common in countries like Finland and Switzerland. That's because the attitudes of most people in those countries appear to be more mature. Thing about this is, overseas incidents like this only adds to the fodder of these greedy gun-worshipping loudmouths, lunkheads and militia crud in the U.S.A. The media stirs up the pot once again. . And they even use the Bible as a cop-out for it, too - saying 'oh, doomsday is tomorrow, we've gonna have wars, blah blah blah' and they use it as excuses excuses excuses for their unchristian hate.

TheDalaiLamasBifocalsApr. 2  06:48 pm JST

There will always be random nutters, even in places like Finland.

Yes are there. Gun smuggling is a lucrative business, that's a fact. Just like drugs are. And there are scummy neu-Nazis in Scandanavia too. One thing is, most Finns seem to be too mature and informed to fall for that crap.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Yes, it happens in other countries, too, there's no denying that.

But it's the fact that America doesn't do anything to address the issue that has the rest of us dumbfounded.

Most other countries react with gun bans or legislation that limits gun ownership, Australia, Norway and New Zealand did that.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

But it's the fact that America doesn't do anything to address the issue that has the rest of us dumbfounded.

You are confused. Lots has been done in the US, but when the US constitution was written, owning of firearms was included as a core "right". It isn't just a normal law, like driving a vehicle with a license falls under. It is a core "right" - like freedom of speech. Changing those core "rights" effectively requires 2/3rd of the country to agree.

Restrictions on those "rights" are very difficult to make happen too. SCOTUS has struck down many attempts to restrict firearm ownership by well-meaning representatives.

So, imagine how hard it would be to take away freedom of speech, expression in any liberal country. That's how hard removing the right to own a firearm in the US will be to take away.

Hope this clears things up.

What can be done is to have laws that require adults to lock up their firearms at home in a way that prevents children from access. Even that restriction hasn't gotten far and I don't know why not. Having a trigger lock doesn't seem like THAT much of an imposition to me. Enforcing the use of a trigger lock or a gun safe will be hard, perhaps impossible, in some communities. Lots of parents will put the trigger lock key next to the firearm, especially if they live in a dangerous community where the reason for owning a firearm is for home protection.

I wish there were a easy-to-implement solution. We can't get 2/3rds of Americans to agree on what to eat 1-time for b'fast, so don't expect much movement on sane firearm limits. I don't expect to see many changes at all during my lifetime. Hunting is a huge sport where I live. It is a family pass time, part of our culture. I have friends who hunt somewhere monthly. They follow the legal game seasons. A few weeks ago, for 2 days, there was a special hunting season just for 16 yr olds and younger in my state. Bear, Turkey, Hogs, Alligator and small game were legal to take (lots of rules) for those 2 days. Right now is turkey season.

Deer and Bear seasons begin in September. They allow archers first, then have "primitive weapons" and youth hunting for a few weeks. Lastly, firearms are allowed to be used.

I think Finland, with fewer people in the whole country than the metro area where I live will be able to come up with reasonable, sufficient, firearm laws to prevent this type of problem. I'm fairly certain they already have laws that prevent firearms in schools, so it isn't just the laws, but enforcement of existing laws that are the problem.

After all, last time I checked, it was illegal to shoot any human, ever, so any gunshot that isn't self-inflicted broke a law already.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

njca4Today  12:53 am JST

Yes, it happens in other countries, too, there's no denying that.

But it's the fact that America doesn't do anything to address the issue that has the rest of us dumbfounded.

Most other countries react with gun bans or legislation that limits gun ownership, Australia, Norway and New Zealand did that.

It's not surprising that their options are limited, given the deeply entrenched belief in the right to gun ownership in the US, a sentiment that isn't as prevalent in other countries.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

kaimycahlApr. 2  10:39 pm JST

Had this type of incident happened in the US there would be HUNDREDS more comments, goes on to show you where ever there are guns in the world these types of incidents will happen. Its not that guns kill but people kill who have access to guns

Really? How many of the over 20,958 murders (in 2021) involving a gun, occuring in the US, do you remember seeing comments on? The sad fact is that it's too common in the US for people to know about the majority of these gun murders or to bother commenting on them.

About eight-in-ten U.S. muurders in 2021 – 20,958 out of 26,031, or 81% – involved a firearm.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

People are quick to rush out the excuse, "A gun by itself has never shot anyone."

And yet, an unarmed human by itself has never shot anyone either.

Maybe we should separate humans and guns so that one cannot use the other to shoot someone.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

njca4Today  12:53 am JST

Yes, it happens in other countries, too, there's no denying that.

But it's the fact that America doesn't do anything to address the issue that has the rest of us dumbfounded.

Most other countries react with gun bans or legislation that limits gun ownership, Australia, Norway and New Zealand did that.

Canada does too. When I visited there last time in 2019, they asked about that. There are limits on the amount of ammunition and what purpose. Just plain 'conceal carry' doesn't mean squat there.

theFuToday  01:50 am JST

But it's the fact that America doesn't do anything to address the issue that has the rest of us dumbfounded.

You are confused. Lots has been done in the US, but when the US constitution was written, owning of firearms was included as a core "right". It isn't just a normal law, like driving a vehicle with a license falls under. It is a core "right" - like freedom of speech. Changing those core "rights" effectively requires 2/3rd of the country to agree.

Restrictions on those "rights" are very difficult to make happen too. SCOTUS has struck down many attempts to restrict firearm ownership by well-meaning representatives.

So, imagine how hard it would be to take away freedom of speech, expression in any liberal country. That's how hard removing the right to own a firearm in the US will be to take away.

And these militia hate turds use that as an excuse to commit the evils that they do. Kill your neighbor, kill your lover, kill your friend. Go out and bash some Jews. They all kowtow to that greedy screaming hysterical loudmouth who has headed the NRA for decades and used the money to buy a fleet of yachts.

What can be done is to have laws that require adults to lock up their firearms at home in a way that prevents children from access. Even that restriction hasn't gotten far and I don't know why not. Having a trigger lock doesn't seem like THAT much of an imposition to me. 

That hardly ever get enforced. Cops really have it tough these days, pull somebody over and they might get their head blown off by some gat-toting maniac. Dark windows in cars only add to the problem.

And the past few years have shown that human life means nothing in America, 'Pro-life' my butt. How about making things livable for the living first?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Canada does too. When I visited there last time in 2019, they asked about that. There are limits on the amount of ammunition and what purpose. Just plain 'conceal carry' doesn't mean squat there.

Canada has nothing to do with the US, they can run their country as they please

And these militia hate turds use that as an excuse to commit the evils that they do.

Define militia, as gun aficionado collector and user, I don't go around shootin' everything that walks or crawls.

Kill your neighbor, kill your lover, kill your friend. Go out and bash some Jews.

Absolute, mindblowing nonsense!

They all kowtow to that greedy screaming hysterical loudmouth who has headed the NRA for decades and used the money to buy a fleet of yachts. 

He has nothing to do with the men and women who support the organization, as I have for decades, management has nothing to do with the members who are 99% law-abiding. 

And the past few years have shown that human life means nothing in America, 'Pro-life' my butt. How about making things livable for the living first?

Well, with the policies currently in place that is just not going to happen. Case in point $20 pay raise?? Food prices will go up, restaurants will close and restaurants will relocate, good policies? Livable?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@starpunkApr. 3 01:09 pm JST

What WORKABLE solution do you have that can actually happen within the political reality of Finland's and the US's laws?

Wishing for something is easy. Like eating blackberries. What is the plan to actually get change to happen legally? Seriously, I'd like to know.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@the Fu

I understand what you're saying, and you're absolutely correct when you say that I am confused.

I just can't get my head around the fact that the country that people look to lead the future is stuck in 1787.

It's really sad

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's really sad

It's called the real world. It is what it is. History leads us to the point we are today. The US needed individuals to have firearm when the country was created. It was deemed so important as to make it a right equivalent to all other "rights".

The idea that an individual has rights over the collective is more important in the US. This is a regional difference. In some parts of the world, the individual is expected to give up their rights for the whole community, regardless of what the right might be. Neither is better. They are just different and both modes can cause big issues for a society.

A few years ago, I read that the guys who wrote the US Constitution expected it to be re-written every 20 yrs. They never intended it to be set in stone or to last over 200 yrs. I'd be afraid of what would come out of a convention that tried to re-write the US Constitution for modern times. The innocence from the 1780s doesn't exist any more. Tricks to have all the blowhard people come, argue, then after a few weeks, get frustrated and either leave or take a night off, then have a core group come in at 2am without any side agendas and pass a new, reasonable, Constitution won't work either.

So the US is stuck with a flawed Constitution for the time of today, but it is still better than any other I've seen, even with those 20-30 flaws. Whether a President or Parliamentary government is better is still to be determined. There are good things about both and bad things about both. Abusive things can happen in both, but they are both "better" than all other forms of govt for most of the people being governed. Monarchies, dictators, fake democracies don't work very well for most of the citizens, of that we can be certain. Power that is too concentrated is a bad thing, especially when the person holding that power will do anything to keep it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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