State TV reported that a gunman who is suspected of shooting eight people dead and injuring thirteen others in a drive by style shooting in Serbia was arrested.
Radio Television of Serbia reported that the attacker, who used an automatic gun to randomly shoot at people in the vicinity of Mladenovac (about 50km south of Belgrade), shot random shots on Thursday evening.
The broadcaster confirmed that Serbian police had arrested the suspect, identified as U.B., after a manhunt known as Operation Whirlwind.
This shooting occurred less than 48-hours after a boy aged 13 shot nine people in a Belgrade school before turning himself into police.
The Serbian news portal Telegraf, which reported the incident without giving any further details, said that Bratislav Gasic, Serbia’s interior minister described the shooting as “a terrorist act”.
Local media reported that after an argument late at night in a schoolyard outside Mladenovac the suspect returned to the scene with an assault weapon, fired and then continued shooting at people from a moving vehicle.
There were no other details immediately available and the police have not released any statements.
Around 600 Serbian Police officers, including the elite Special Anti-Terrorist Unit (SAJ), and Gendarmerie launched a manhunt in order to find the suspect.
A Reuters reporter saw heavily armed police establishing a traffic checkpoint near the village Dubona not far from Mladenovac.
In the surrounding hills and forest, a helicopter, drones as well as multiple police patrols searched for the suspect.
In the shooting that took place at Vladislav ribnikar Primary School in Belgrade on Wednesday, eight children and a guard were killed.
The police said that the 13-year old boy used two handguns, which he took from his father. He had also planned the attack over a period of a month. The boy had drawn sketches of classrooms, and a list of children that he intended to kill.
Seven people were also hospitalised, including six children and one teacher. Doctors said that a girl who was hit in the head is still in a serious condition and a boy with spinal injuries is also in a serious condition.
The first mass shooting in a school in the country prompted the government’s announcement of tougher gun ownership rules.
Two students remain in critical condition following school shooting
The president of Serbia announced a moratorium for new firearms licences, except those issued to hunters, as well as a review and revision of the existing permits. He also said that shooting ranges would be more closely monitored, along with how weapons are stored.
The police urged residents to secure their firearms and keep them away from children.
On Thursday, thousands gathered to pay tribute to those who were killed in the Wednesday morning shooting. They lit candles and laid flowers in central Belgrade.
Serbia and the Balkans are rife with gun culture. The number of guns per person in the region is one of the highest in Europe.