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Students, Parents Outraged Over Shooting at US University


Outrage is mounting among Virginia Tech students and their parents Tuesday, over the failure of officials at the university in the eastern U.S. state of Virginia to warn students and lock down the campus immediately after the first shootings on the campus Monday.

Students were not warned of any danger until more than two hours after Monday's first attack - at a dormitory where two people were killed.

Virginia Tech President Charles Steger told reporters Monday that officials and police thought those murders were an isolated incident and that the killer had left the campus. Two hours later the gunman killed 30 people and wounded 15 others in another building before committing suicide.

Among the dead were an engineering professor from India and an Israeli lecturer.

A total of 33 people died in the two shooting incidents. Police and university officials have not yet publicly confirmed that one gunman was responsible for both.

The rampage is being call the deadliest shooting incident in U.S. history.

Witnesses described horrific scenes as the gunman calmly fired into groups of students huddled behind desks.

The gunman killed himself before police arrived. Officials have not released his identity nor a motive for the attacks.

Virginia Tech is closed Tuesday, and students and faculty plan to hold a public gathering at 2:00 pm EDT.

Virginia Tech is a state university with about 26,000 students. It is located in the southwest corner of the state, about 386 kilometers from Washington, D.C.

The university's web site says that more than 1,400 international students are enrolled at Virginia Tech in any given year.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

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