Gunman kills three, then himself, in Belgium attack

A police officer escorts a woman away from the scene of the attack in Liege, December 13, 2011

From Thierry Roge, Reuters:  A gunman shot dead three people at a busy central square during a Christmas market in the Belgian city of Liege Tuesday and then killed himself, a justice official said.

More than 75 people were injured in the attack, some of them seriously, Liege’s prosecutor told a news conference. As well as firing from a rifle, the gunman also threw explosives, officials and witnesses said.

Gaspard Grosjean, a journalist for a local Liege newspaper, was in the square moments after the attack. . . .

The gunman, named as Nordine Amrani, 33, began his attack near a bus stop at Place Saint Lambert, a central shopping area and the site of the city’s annual Christmas market and its main courthouse.

He ended by shooting himself in the head with a handgun, witnesses said.

It was clear not what his motive was, but justice officials said he had been summoned in the morning to appear before police and had previous convictions for illegal possession of arms and of drugs.

"He has no history of terrorist acts," prosecutor Daniele Reynders told a news conference in Liege.  (photo: AP)

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