Soldier Fatally Shoots 8 Fellow Servicemen in Russia After Breakdown, Reports Say

A soldier in Russia shot and killed eight fellow servicemen in the nations Far East region, state-run news outlets said on Friday.

Officials said the shooting took place in the village of Gorny in Chita, located near the Russian-Chinese border, in the Transbaikal region, the state-backed TASS news agency reported.

The soldiers name has not yet been released, and he is said to be a conscript. He was guarding a nearby base, the defense ministry said, according to the BBC.

Reports said that six conscripts and two officers were gunned down in the incident.

The defense ministry stated that the soldier opened fire on his colleagues, using his service weapon, as they changed guard at around 6:20 p.m. local time, TASS also reported.

Russian soldiers on patrol in a file photo. (Fillippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images)

Ministry officials said he had a “nervous breakdown over personal problems unrelated to his military duties,” TASS also reported.

The soldier was described as a “young man” in local reports, and he is said to have aimed at his victims heads before shooting those he had injured, The Telegraph reported. Witnesses said he used “controlled shots” during the incident.

A deputy defense ministry official, Andrey Kartapolov, is slated to travel to the military base, which is also located close to the border with Mongolia, to investigate.

Russian soldiers stand near a trainload of their modified T-72 tanks after their arrival in Gvardeyskoe railway station near the Crimean capital Simferopol, on March 31, 2014. (Olga Maltseva/AFP/Getty Images)
Russian soldiers stand near a trainload of their modified T-72 tanks after their arrival in Gvardeyskoe railway station near the Crimean capital Simferopol, on March 31, 2014. (Olga Maltseva/AFP/Getty Images)
Russian soldiers stand near a trainload of their modified T-72 in another file photo. (Olga Maltseva/AFP/Getty Images)

Elaborating further, the Russian defense ministry said: “At 6:20 p.m. local time on October 25, a serviceman of the repair and maintenance base stationed on the territory of the Trans-Baikal Region opened fire against his fellow servicemen from this service firearm during a change of the guard,” the TASS news agency reported. “As a result, eight servicemen were killed on the spot while two others received wounds of various severity.”

The two injured soldiers and officers “were promptly taken to the military hospital where they received necessary qualified medical assistance and their health condition is not life-threatening,” the statement added.

Those two soldiers are in critical condition, officials also said.

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A dam collapse at a gold mine in Russia left at least 15 people dead, officials in Siberia have confirmed as rescuers on Oct. 20 were attempting to locate survivors.

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