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News

Swiss gunman kills three, wounds others

A Swiss man has shot dead several people in the region of Valais after opening fire in a public area. Police on the scene were able to disarm the man and take him into custody.

Late Wednesday in the Swiss of village of Daillon, police moved swiftly to the scene of the crime where they found the gunman still armed. Officers then exchanged gunfire with the man, whom they wounded and then took into custody, according to a statement issued by the Swiss police early Thursday morning.

"Several injured people [were] lying on the ground," when they arrived. The statement added that "three victims died at the scene. Two other people were wounded and hospitalized."

The motive behind the attack - which took place around 9 p.m. (20.00 GMT) - remained unclear.

New agencies relying on the website 20 Minutes Online described the assailant as a man around the age of 30 and a resident of the village, located near the French and Italian borders. He was reportedly intoxicated prior to the shooting. 20 Minutes Online said he used an assault rifle.

Switzerland ranks third in the rate of gun ownership in the world, with an estimated 3,400,000 guns in a country with a population of around eight million.

kms/pfd (AFP, Reuters, AP, dpa, dapd)