Rotterdam shooting: Two dead after gunman opens fire in classroom at a university hospital

Rotterdam shooting suspect was arrested after police said on social media that shots had been fired at the Rotterdam Medical Centre and a home

By Web Desk
September 28, 2023
Chaos in Rotterdam university hospital after a gunman opened fire. — AFP

Two people were murdered after a man opened fire in a classroom at Erasmus Medical Center, a university hospital, in the Dutch port city of Rotterdam on Thursday, as per information by police.

A 32-year-old suspect was arrested after police said on social media that shots had been fired at the Erasmus Medical Center and a home.


According to earlier reports the gunman dressed in combat gear opened fire on a flat and then burst into the nearby medical centre. Fires broke out in both places but were later extinguished.

"The two shooting incidents in Rotterdam have resulted in fatalities. We will first inform family and relatives and will explain more later," the city police said in a statement on X, formerly Twitter.

Elite police units had burst into the Erasmus Medical Center searching for the suspect, who was armed with a handgun, authorities said.

The suspect's motive for the attack is unknown, local news agency ANP said, citing police. Both shootings were carried out by the same suspect, police said.

Pictures from the scene showed people streaming out of the hospital, including medics and patients, as police in body armour moved in. Police helicopters buzzed overhead.

Medics in white coats wheeled patients out on stretchers and wheelchairs

Police had earlier said the suspect was wearing "combat-style" clothes, was tall, with black hair and carrying a backpack.

"First there was a shooting on the fourth floor. Four or five shots were fired. Then a Molotov cocktail was thrown into the education centre," said a medical student cited by RTL Nieuws, who did not give his name.

"There was a lot of panic and screaming ... I didn't hear any shots, just the panic and that's what I started to act on," public broadcaster NOS cited another eyewitness as saying.

Rotterdam is often the scene of shootings, usually attributed to score-settling by rival drug gangs.

Authorities were expected to hold a news conference shortly to give more details.

In 2019, three people were shot dead on a tram in Utrecht, sparking a huge manhunt.

In 2011, the country was left shocked when 24-year-old Tristan van der Vlis killed six people and wounded 10 others in a rampage at a packed shopping mall.