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30 injured in Vienna gurudwara shootout: Officials

world Updated: May 24, 2009 21:18 IST

At least 30 people were injured, nine of them seriously, when rival Sikh groups clashed with each other using knives and a handgun during a sermon in a gurudwara in Vienna.

Police said nine people were severely wounded when members of two families started shooting at each other. Five people suffered head shots and stab wounds, Austrian Press Association said in a report on its website.

Police spokesman Michael Takacs said five men entered the Gurdwara early this afternoon and started firing at those present. Five suspects have been arrested, he said.

Austria Press Agency quoted a witness Jasuf Kalden as saying that the fight erupted after a dispute over the sermon, given by Guru Ravidas Sabha.

Police said at least six men, one wielding a gun and the others knives, attacked the preacher. Others rushed to his aid, resulting in the melee.

The Gurdwara is situated in Vienna-Rudolfsheim, the capital's 15th district.

The wounded were evacuated in three helicopters to several hospitals, rescuers said.

"All the people implicated in the incident have been arrested," Takacs said.