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Auckland shooting: Two people and a gunman killed on eve of Women's World Cup

Police responded to reports a man had fired shots in a building in downtown Auckland, two miles from Eden Park, the venue for the opening match of the Women's World Cup between co-hosts New Zealand and Norway; NZ Prime Minister says tournament will go ahead as planned

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Sky News' Jessica Maggio reports from Auckland after two people and a gunman were killed in the city on the eve of the Women's World Cup

Two people and a gunman have been killed in a "serious incident" in Auckland on the eve of the Women's World Cup.

Police responded to reports a man had fired shots in a building in downtown Auckland, two miles from Eden Park, the venue for the opening match of the tournament between co-hosts New Zealand and Norway.

New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins said at least six people had been injured, including a police officer, who was able to walk to an ambulance with assistance from colleagues.

Hipkins met with FIFA president Gianni Infantino following the incident, and confirmed the World Cup would go ahead as planned.

A minute's silence was held ahead of the opening match between New Zealand and Norway at Eden Park which the hosts won 1-0.

"Clearly with the FIFA World Cup kicking off this evening, there are a lot of eyes on Auckland," Hipkins said. "The government has spoken to FIFA organisers this morning and the tournament will proceed as planned.

"I want to reiterate that there is no wider national security threat. This appears to be the action of one individual."

New Zealand Football said it was "shocked by news of the incident in Auckland CBD".

It added: "We can confirm that all of the Football Ferns team and staff are safe but we will not be able to comment further while details are still emerging."

Speaking after New Zealand's surprise victory over Norway, captain Ali Riley paid tribute to the victims of the attack and said she and her team-mates had wanted to use the match as an inspiration to them.

"The energy helped us get through it," she said.

"This morning, something really tragic happened and we wanted to bring something positive. We thought of the victims and first responders and we wanted to bring something amazing today."

Infantino said New Zealand authorities had been working with FIFA "from the earliest moment of this tragic incident".

"We have been involved in ongoing communication from the outset, and we have also received the necessary reassurances from Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson in relation to the safety and security of the participating teams and fans at the FIFA Women's World Cup in New Zealand," he said.

"FIFA extends its deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims who lost their lives, and our thoughts and prayers remain with those who have been injured in this tragic incident."

Norway captain Maren Mjelde said people woke up quickly when a helicopter began hovering outside the hotel window.

"We felt safe the whole time," she said in a statement. "FIFA has a good security system at the hotel, and we have our own security officer in the squad. Everyone seems calm and we are preparing as normal for the game [on Thursday]."

The incident comes as many football teams were gathering in New Zealand for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup, which begins in Auckland on July 20.

NZ police: Incident not viewed as national security risk

Police said the situation had been contained to a single building that was under construction in lower Queen Street but urged people to avoid the area or stay inside their buildings if already there.

"Police have contained a serious incident that unfolded at a construction site in Auckland's CBD this morning," a New Zealand Police statement read.

"Multiple injuries have been reported and at this stage we can confirm two people have died. The male offender is also deceased.

"This incident unfolded after reports of a person discharging a firearm inside the site on lower Queen Street at around 7.22am.

"A significant number of police responded and cordoned off the area. The Police Eagle helicopter was also deployed and provided oversight.

An armed New Zealand police officer stands at a road block in the central business district following a shooting in Auckland, New Zealand
Image: An armed New Zealand police officer stands at a road block in Auckland's central business district following the shooting

"The offender has moved through the building site and continued to discharge his firearm.

"Upon reaching the upper levels of the building, the male has contained himself within the elevator shaft and our staff have attempted to engage with him. Further shots were fired from the male, and he was located deceased a short time later.

"Details around what has exactly occurred are still emerging and police will continue to provide updates around injuries and the circumstances."

New Zealand Police moved to reassure the public, confirming the incident did not pose a national security risk.

The FIFA Women's World Cup 20232 Australia & New Zealand kicks-off in Auckland on July 20
Image: The FIFA Women's World Cup 2023 kicks off in Auckland on July 20

"What has unfolded is understandably alarming and we are reassuring the public that this incident has been contained and is an isolated incident," the statement continued. "We can also advise that this is not a national security risk.

"Police are now commencing an investigation into what has occurred this morning. Cordons remain in place and we are continuing to ask the public to stay away from the area as our work continues.

"Updates will continue to be provided this morning and police will also be fronting an update to media this afternoon."

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