Two masked gunmen have shot and killed at five children who were on their snack breaks at a Brazilian primary school, as well as two school officials, before fatally turning their guns on themselves .
Ten people, including the gunmen, were killed in the attack, Sao Paulo police said. The students who died were mostly 15 and 16 years old.
The former pupils aged 17 and 25 had shot and killed the owner of a car rental agency from which they had stolen a vehicle, before entering the Raul Brasil school in the Sao Paulo city of Suzano on Wednesday.
More than 1000 children aged between 11 and 15 attend classes there.
Another ten people - mostly schoolchildren - were shot and injured, and several of them were in serious condition, said police, who were not yet aware of a motive for the violence.
Marcelo Salles, commander of police forces in Sao Paulo state, spoke just outside the school and said that in his over three decades of service, he had "never seen anything like this, it was an unspeakably brutal crime".
Salles said the gunmen used at least one .38 calibre pistol, along with homemade bombs and a crossbow. Police arrived eight minutes after the shooting started and did not confront the gunmen, who had already killed themselves, he said.
A homemade video taken during the shooting and aired by Globo TV showed children screaming, running and begging for their lives as loud shots were heard all around.
Security cameras from homes near the school showed children climbing and jumping over a white wall that surrounds the Raul Brasil building, and sprinting down streets, screaming for help.
School shootings are rare in Brazil, even though the country is one of the world's most violent, with more annual homicides than any other. The last major school shooting was in 2011, when 12 children were shot dead by a former pupil in Rio de Janeiro.
Police said the two men, who they did not believe were former students at the school, entered the building and started shooting at about 9.30am local time on Wednesday.
Another shooting took place about 500 metres from the Raul Brasil school shortly before the killings at the school, but it was not yet clear if the two incidents were related.
Sao Paulo Governor Joao Doria said as he stood outside the school that "our solidarity goes out to the families of the victims".
"I was shocked with the scenes I saw inside that school," Doria said. "It is the saddest thing I have seen in my life."
© AP 2019