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Fifteen killed in South Africa shooting

JOHANNESBURG (AP) – A mass shooting at a eatery in Johannesburg’s Soweto township has killed 15 people and left others in critical condition, according to police.

Police said they are investigating reports that a group of men arrived in a minibus taxi and opened fire on some of the patrons at the eatery late Saturday night. Police were removing the bodies of the deceased and investigating what had led to the mass shooting yesterday.

Those injured have been taken to Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital.

The number of cartridges found on the scene indicates that a group of people opened fire in the eatery, said Gauteng Province Police Commissioner Lieutenant General Elias Mawela.

“The primary investigation suggests that these people were enjoying themselves here, in a licensed establishment operating within the right hours,” Mawela told The Associated Press (AP).

Members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) and forensic pathology service inspect the scene of a mass shooting in Soweto, South Africa. PHOTO: AFP

“All of a sudden they heard some gunshots, that is when people tried to run out of the eatery. We don’t have the full details at the moment of what is the motive, and why they were targetting these people,” he said.

“You can see that a high calibre firearm was used and it was shooting randomly. You can see that every one of those people were struggling to get out of the tavern,” Mawela told AP.

The area where the shooting took place was very dark, making it harder to find people who could identify the suspects, he said.

Rifles and a nine-millimetre pistol were used in the attack, said national police spokeswoman Colonel Dimakatso Sello.

The shooting in Soweto comes two weeks after 21 teenagers were found dead in an eatery in the city of East London.

The cause of those deaths has not yet been announced by authorities, but the teens were not shot nor crushed in a stampede, according to officials.