Narrow escape for Waldorf class at killing spree in Liege
WITTEN (NNA) - A tenth class from the Rudolf Steiner School in Witten, Germany, narrowly escaped the attack by a lone gun fanatic in the Belgian city of Liege shortly before Christmas which ended with the death of five people and the injury of over one hundred more.n the morning of the attack, the 26 students were on their way to Liege Christmas market accompanied by two teachers. The purpose of the trip was for the children to practice their French in a natural setting.
For an hour the school was left in the dark as to the fate of the pupils when it heard about the attack. Only then was it confirmed that they were safe, upper school teacher Gerti Strothmann-Rath told the online edition of WAZ newspaper. The pupils were taken back to Witten by bus and did not have to attend lessons the next day. Teachers also offered counselling to help them come to terms with what they had experienced.
The Waldorf students were on their way to Liege city centre at 12.30 when they heard explosions and gunshots. At Place Saint-Lambert they ran into people screaming and crying. They shouted to the pupils in French to get themselves to safety.
Police and ambulances were speeding through the city. The students fled and sought protection with the Belgian police. Only then, in a cafe, did they realise what was happening as pictures of the incident were broadcast on Belgian TV. At about 15.00 the police announced that they had the situation in the cordoned off Liege city centre under control.
According to eyewitness accounts, the attacker, a convicted gun fanatic, first let off a hand grenade and then opened fire with a machine gun on a crowd of people waiting at a bus stop near the Christmas market. At the end of the massacre he committed suicide.
Item: 120123-02EN Date: 23 January 2012
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