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03 Nov 2020 | 03:05 PM UTC

Austria: Islamic State claim responsibility for fatal shooting in Vienna November 3 /update 4

Islamic State claim responsibility for fatal shooting attack in Vienna on November 3; monitor for developments

security
transportation
AUT

Event

The Islamic State (IS) militant group claimed responsibility for the fatal shooting attack in Vienna via its Amaq News Agency site on Tuesday, November 3. In the statement released by IS, a picture and video were included purportedly showing the perpetrator of the attack, Abu Dagnah Al-Albany, in which Albany reportedly pledged allegiance to IS leader Abu Ibrahim al-Hashemi al-Quraishi. Austrian officials identified the attacker as Kujtim Fejzulai, a dual citizen of Austria and North Macedonia, who had been sentenced to 22 months in jail in April 2019 for attempting to travel to Syria to join IS, but was then released early in December.

Austrian Interior Minister Karl Nehammer confirmed on Tuesday morning that the death toll from the attack in Vienna on Monday evening, November 2, has risen to five. At least 15 people are also reported to have been injured in the shootings, at least seven seriously, and one attacker was shot dead by police. It remains unconfirmed whether the attack was carried out by one gunman, or whether there were others involved. 

A heightened security presence and associated disruptions to transportation are likely in Vienna in the near term while police carry out operations.

Context

Reports indicate that shots were fired in the first district of Vienna (Innere Stadt) in the Seitenstettengasse area at around 20:00 (local time) on November 2. Austria's Federal Ministry of the Interior has called the incident a "terrorist attack" and the shootings were reportedly carried out by several gunmen, and six different locations. The attacks occurred on the final night before a new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) lockdown was due to come into force in the city.

Advice

Those in Vienna are advised to avoid the area of the incident, monitor the situation, and heed all instructions issued by local authorities.

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