At least 37 dead, six injured after attack at Tunisia tourist destination - official
Published 26/06/2015 | 12:36
At least 37 people are reported to have been killed following an attack at a coastal tourist destination in Tunisia.
Tunisian officials are reporting the deaths after the shooting on a beach in the popular tourist area of Sousse.
It is also being reported that a gunman has been killed after fire exchange with officers. Another gunman was arrested at the scene.
The attack is believed to have occurred between Hotel Bellevue and the Royal Kenzo Hotel.
It is believed that six different nationalities are among the fatalities.
The resort is particularly popular with Irish and British tourists.
Your Questions: Tunisia Attack: What should holidaymakers do now?
A man at the scene told Sky News that tourists on the beach saw a gunman on the beach before they heard gunshots and everybody started 'running in and screaming'.
Tourists reported to be locked into their hotel rooms after the attack and were not sure of the emergency process.
Irishwoman Elizabeth O'Brien is holidaying in the area with her two sons.
Speaking to RTE Radio One's News At One, she said she initially thought it was fireworks: “I just heard rapid firing, I thought it was fireworks, it sounds like gunfire.
“I ran to the sea and grabbed my kids and our things and, as I was running towards the hotel, the security on the beach started shouting ‘Run, run’.
“We ran to our room and now we are trapped in our room, the phone here doesn’t work to contact reception . The consul said there was a terrorist attack in the hotel next door, he told me to stay put, my travel agent said to go to the reception to speak to the rep , but I’m afraid so I’m stuck here in the room with my two sons.
“The agent said the attack was isolated to the hotel next door. The consul told me it was a terror attack.
“I just ran as soon as I heard the noise , I just thought of the museum incident a few months ago.”
At least sixty Irish people travelled to Tunisia with one travel company this week.
The Department of Foreign Affairs told Independent.ie they have issued an 'Urgent Travel Alert'.
"Our Embassy in Madrid and our Honorary Consul in Tunis are monitoring the situation in Sousse, Tunisia and are providing updates," a spokesperson told Independent.ie.
"Anyone with concerns about family or friends can call the Department on 01 408 2000."
They said they are 'strongly advising' holidaymakers to follow the advice of the Tunisian authorities and to maintain contact with your tour organiser.
Holiday agency Sunway Holidays have released a statement following the incident. They said: "In relation to the incident in Tunisia earlier today, Sunway Holidays is working in conjunction with the Department of Foreign Affairs and relevant parties.
"Our primary concern is our customers in resort and we are monitoring the situation closely. Further updates when information becomes available."
There are reports of a Jetairfly flight 5017 who returned to Brussels while en route to Tunisia, following news of the attacks, according to official flight-tracking website 'Flight Radar'.