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Cape Verde arrests soldier over barracks massacre

The authorities in Cape Verde have tracked down a young soldier suspected of a deadly shooting spree at a military barracks. The suspect was captured while trying to steal a taxi, according to the local media.

The officials detained the 23-year-old fugitive after a day-long manhunt in the Cape Verde capital of Praia on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva praised the country's security forces and their "rapid intervention" in capturing the soldier for the "odious crime" in which 11 people were killed.

On Tuesday, authorities had discovered 11 corpses in a military barracks north of Praia, near a hilltop communications hub. All of the victims were shot to death. In addition to eight soldiers, the shooter also targeted three civilians, including two Spanish citizens. The Spaniards had been conducting technical maintenance on the communications base.

After the attack, the government said that one of the soldiers was unaccounted for, and implied that he might be the shooter. The massacre was inspired by "personal motives," they said in a statement.

Several hours after the incident, the officials recovered a car containing nine guns and ammunition in the capital.

Captured by taxi driver

The suspect was apprehended while trying to steal a taxi in Praia, the Cape Verde media reported on Wednesday. The taxi driver allegedly managed to overpower the fugitive with the help of several passers-by.

The soldier was armed but offered no resistance during his arrest, media said.

Cape Verde is a former Portuguese colony, made up of 10 islands located about 600 kilometers (370 miles) off the coast of Senegal. It is home to some half a million people.

The government has declared two days of national mourning over the barracks massacre.

dj/gsw (AFP, AP, dpa)

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