A new shooting broke out in the United States on Tuesday evening. According to a new report provided by a state senator, Roland Gutierrez, 19 young children were killed Tuesday in a shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, along with two teachers. The shooter also died.
A teenager killed 21 people at a Texas school on Tuesday, plunging the United States back into a chronic nightmare, with President Joe Biden urging a jump to regulate guns. The 18-year-old gunman opened fire at a primary school, killing 19 young students aged 10 or less and two teachers, before being shot dead by police. “It is time to turn pain into action,” reacted the American president, visibly moved, in a solemn address at the White House.
The shooter killed his victims “in an atrocious and senseless way”
“When for God’s sake are we going to face the gun lobby?” Biden said, saying he was “sick and tired” of the litany of school shootings. The gunman killed his victims “in an atrocious and senseless fashion” in the town of Uvalde, about an hour from the Mexican border, Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott said.
Identified as Salvador Ramos, he was killed by police, officials with the Texas Department of Public Safety said. “So far, 19 children have been killed by this vicious shooter, along with two teachers from this school,” Department spokesman Lt. Chris Olivarez told NBC News.
The children were under 10 years old
More than a dozen children were also injured, according to information from Texas hospitals.
The shooter was wearing at least a rifle and a paramilitary outfit, Sergeant Erick Estrada told CNN. Salvador Ramos, of American nationality, would have first targeted his grandmother, whose state of health remained to be clarified, before going to school by car to perpetrate his massacre there. The motives for this attack, one of the worst in a school for years, remain unknown for the moment.
Teacher killed while trying to protect her students
More than 500 children, nearly 90% of whom are Hispanic, were studying at the facility during the 2020-2021 school year, according to state data. Videos shared on social networks showed children evacuated in an emergency, shaking hands or running in small groups towards yellow school buses, in front of this establishment with low and flat buildings, typical of the south of the United States.
Eva Mireles, a teacher, was shot and killed while trying to protect her students, her aunt Lydia Martinez Delgado told The New York Times. “I am furious that these shootings continue, these children are innocent, guns should not be readily available to everyone,” she told US media.
The shooting happened while Joe Biden was on his way home from a tour of Asia. He spoke in the evening, upon his arrival at the White House. “Too much is too much,” said Vice President Kamala Harris, calling for “action” in the face of gun violence, a national scourge.
“Our hearts continue to be broken,” she said. “We must find the courage to act,” she added to the address of Congress, powerless to legislate despite the tragedies.
Reactions all over the world
Pope Francis also said on Wednesday that he was “heartbroken” by this tragedy. “It is time to say ‘enough’ to the uncontrolled arms trade”, he also declared.
France shares the “shock and pain of the American people” as well as the “anger” of those who oppose the proliferation of firearms in the United States, President Emmanuel Macron said in a tweet.
“We must put an end to this daily horror in the United States,” tweeted Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, while German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said his thoughts were with the victims “of this inconceivable massacre”.
For his part, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky offered his condolences to the victims and lamented that there are “victims of shooters in peacetime”.
A drama that reminds of others
The White House ordered flags to be flown at half-mast in all public buildings to “honor the victims” of Uvalde. The attack plunged the country back into the throes of school shootings, which are frequently repeated with shocking images of traumatized students forced to confine themselves to their classrooms before being evacuated by law enforcement and parents panicked, desperate to hear from their children.
The tragedy is reminiscent of that of Sandy Hook elementary school, which occurred in 2012 in Connecticut, where a 20-year-old unbalanced man killed 26 people, including twenty children aged 6 and 7, before committing suicide.
Chris Murphy, a Democratic senator from this state in the northeastern United States, “begged” his elected colleagues on Tuesday to act, assuring that these tragedies were not “inevitable”. “It only happens in this country, and nowhere else. In no other country do children go to school thinking they might get shot.”
America was also particularly marked by a shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida, which killed 17 people, the majority of them teenagers, in 2018.
This new killing is sure to reignite criticism of the proliferation of firearms in the United States, a debate that is almost empty given the absence of hope of a passage by Congress of an ambitious national law. On the question. The leader of the Democrats in Congress, Nancy Pelosi, denounced a “monstrous act which stole the future of dear children”. “There are no words that can describe the pain and outrage at the cold-blooded slaughter of little schoolchildren and a teacher,” she wrote in a statement.