An automatic weapon attack killed at least eight people and injured 13 others on Thursday evening, May 4, near the Serbian town of Mladenovac, about 50 km south of Belgrade.
The suspect opened fire from a moving vehicle on a group of people and fled, according to public television RTS. The police launched an extensive search operation, dubbed "Whirlwind", to find him. Many police and ambulances have been dispatched to the scene, and helicopters are flying over the scene. Serbian Interior Minister Bratislav Gasic called the killing a terrorist act.
This attack comes just after another tragedy that occurred in a school in Belgrade where a 13-year-old boy killed, on Wednesday, with a semi-automatic weapon, eight of his comrades - including a young girl of French nationality - and the guard of the 'establishment. In the aftermath of this unprecedented massacre which shocked the country, classes in all schools began with a minute of silence to pay tribute to the victims.
Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic lamented Wednesday "one of the most difficult days in the contemporary history" of the country. Three days of national mourning were declared from Friday.
The third country in terms of the circulation of firearms
A total of 765,000 weapons, including more than 232,000 pistols, are legally registered in this country of seven million people. The Interior Ministry announced on Thursday home checks to verify that these weapons were kept in accordance with the rules.
According to a study carried out in 2018 by the Swiss NGO Small Arms Survey and quoted by the N1 channel, Serbia is the third country in the world in terms of the circulation of firearms, with 39 weapons per 100 inhabitants.
The Serbian authorities attribute this to the consequences of the various conflicts that shook the countries of the former Yugoslavia during the 1990s. By way of comparison, it is in the United States that firearms circulate the most, with 120 weapons for 100 inhabitants.