High-security navy yard stormed in Washington

Unidentified gunmen kill 12, injure many

High-security navy yard stormed in Washington

At least 12 people were killed in a shooting on Monday at the US Navy Yard in Washington, where one suspected gunman was among the dead and authorities were searching for two other possible assailants wearing military-style clothing, said officials.

The exact number of dead and wounded fluctuated in the hours following the shooting, which took place about 5 km from the White House, starting about 8:30 am EDT (1230 GMT).

The Washington DC mayor and the police chief said there were 12 fatalities in the shooting at the Naval Sea Systems Command, one of five such commands where civilians, military personnel and contractors build, buy and maintain Navy ships and submarines. About 3,000 people work there.

“We have no indication of motive at this time,” said Washington DC police chief Cathy Lanier.

Police described the two other possible suspects as a white man and a black man, each wearing military-style clothing, although other law enforcement officials cautioned that it was still unclear whether more than one gunman was involved.

“We are confronting yet another mass shooting, and today (on Monday) it happened at another military installation, in our nation’s capital,” said US President Barack Obama, who vowed to enact “sensible” gun-control measures after a gunman shot dead 20 schoolchildren and six adults at an elementary school in Connecticut last December.

“They know the dangers of serving abroad, but today they face the unimaginable violence that they wouldn’t have expected here at home,” said Obama, who spoke at the start of a speech on the US economy.

Patricia Ward, who works at the Navy Yard, said she heard three shots, and then four more after a pause. “Everybody was panicking and trying to decide which way to get out,” Ward told reporters.

Security guards told people to “run, run, run”, Ward said. Washington police declined to give a number of fatalities, saying there were “multiple victims deceased inside”.

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