Gunman sparks panic at Philippines resort, injuring 54

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A man armed with a rifle has opened fire inside a casino at Resorts World Manila in the Philippines, causing mass panic as he stole chips worth millions of dollars, officials say. Dozens of people have been injured.

The incident began on early Friday morning when a man started shooting at LCD screens before setting multiple casino tables on fire. He also filled a backpack with casino chips worth an estimated 130 million Philippine Pesos ($2.6 million).

The gunfire caused mass panic as visitors tried to flee the venue, forcing some people to jump from windows in desperate attempts to escape. A large number of security forces responded to the scene and began looking for the gunman.

Philippine National Police chief Ronald dela Rosa confirmed just after 6:30 a.m. that the gunman had committed suicide. He later added that the suspect died after he apparently set himself on fire.

A total of 54 people were treated for injuries, though most were minor and only 18 people had to be hospitalized. All of the victims were injured as a result of the ensuing panic, with the exception of a security guard who suffered a “slight” gunshot wound when he or she accidentally shot themselves.

Manila Police Chief Oscar Albayalde said the suspect is believed to have been a gambling addict who “went crazy” after losing money. He said there was no indication of a link to terrorism, despite an earlier claim from an ISIS militant who said the group was responsible.

Resorts World Manila, which is located right outside Ninoy Aquino International Airport, has four hotels, casino gaming areas, a shopping mall, cinemas, restaurants, and other services. Operations at the airport are continuing as normal.

(Copyright 2015 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. Info: sales@bnonews.com.)

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