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Gunman kills 36 in Manila casino

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ResortsWorldManilaAttack
nman has killed 36 people, including himself at the Resorts World Manila casino in the Philippines.

In what police are calling a botched robbery the man burst into the casino and began firing shots into the air, before pouring petrol over gaming tables and setting them alight.

Officials at the Resorts World Manila casino said that the victims included 13 employees and 22 guests.

The man, who has not been named, was later found dead in one of the hotel rooms.

At a press conference, Ernesto Abella a spokesperson for Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said: "All indications point to a criminal act by an apparently emotionally disturbed individual."

Abella added: "Although the perpetrator gave warning shots, there apparently was no indication that he wanted to do harm or shoot anyone."

The Islamic State terrorist organisation had claimed responsibility for the attack, however authorities believe that there was no terrorist motive behind the massacre.

Philippine national police Chief Dela Rosa told local radio station DZMM radio "Don't panic, this is not a cause for alarm. We cannot attribute this to terrorism.

"We are looking into a robbery angle because he did not hurt any people and went straight to the casino chips storage room. He parked at the second floor and barged into the casino, shooting large TV screens and poured gasoline on a table setting it on fire."

Despite assurances from local authorities that there is no terrorism link, many local casinos have increased security as a result. Casino owner Lawrence Ho, who owns the nearby City of Dreams casino and several others in the city told Reuters: "With an incident like this, especially at Resorts World Manila, we certainly would ratchet that (security) up even more...certainly an issue we will buckle down on.”

Ho added: "We get news about what happens around the region. Occasionally, there is instability within geopolitics in the Philippines and the ASEAN region, so we take it (security) very seriously."

Picture:philstar.com

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