Two dead in Curacao airport shooting – “This is a serious blow to our tourism”POSTED: 07/17/14 4:49 PM
WILLEMSTAD – Two people were gunned down in a brazen gangland style shooting at Curacao’s Hato International Airport Tuesday evening. And at least six others were wounded, police said. According to reports, a car drove up to the front of the arrival hall; one of the occupants then jumped out and indiscriminately opened fire on a group of people in the arrivals hall. There were a lot of shots fired, the reports said. The shooting naturally caused a lot of commotion at the airport.
The two people killed are from Curacao, one died at the scene, while the other died later in hospital from the wounds suffered. Among the six injured were German nationals residing on Curacao who were arriving from Germany on Air Berlin. The six injured were reported in stable condition up to press time.
According to our sources this incident is a settlement in the criminal world. It appears that it is a gang related attack. The two fatalities are apparently from the neighborhood of Buena Vista, police said. Police authorities locked down the Hato International Airport after the shooting in search of the killers. There have been several criminal scores settled recently in Curacao, local media said.
The two men were hit just as they were leaving the arrival hall. Those injured in the crossfire were hit by stray bullets. A mother was hit in the leg while she was in the hallway and a woman in a wheelchair was hit in the parking lot, it was said. The third runner up of a Curaçao beauty pageant was also among those injured.
The Minister of Justice indicated that the police are already on the lead of who the perpetrators are and in the coming days they will be arrested. “This is a serious blow to our tourism and the perpetrators of this heinous crime must be found and punished to the fullest extent of the law,” the Minister said. The Minister and the Curacao Tourism Bureau (CTB) indicated that they have appointed professionals to assist those who have witnessed this horrendous incident.
The CTB did not give any statements yesterday morning but indicated that they will have a meeting with various stakeholders to see how they are going to assist those tourists that were injured and also prepare a prepare a plan for damage control seeing the impact this incident will have on the island’s tourism industry.
Curacao tourism authorities said they are very concerned about the incident and what impact it may have on the sector. Prime Minister Ivar Asjes later assured the country and the international community that the incident was an isolated one. The police are investigating the case.