A suspected Islamic extremist wielding an assault rifle and a handgun has killed about 20 people after taking party-goers hostage inside a gay nightclub in Orlando.
The gunman was carrying a suspicious device, possibly a suicide vest, when he opened fire on the dance floor inside Pulse in the early hours of this morning.
Orlando Police Chief John Mina said authorities have not determined the exact number of people killed, but that ‘approximately 20’ have died. Another 42 people were taken to hospital.
An FBI spokesman said the mass shooting is being investigated as an act of terrorism. He explained authorities are looking into whether this was an act of domestic or international terror, and if the shooter was a lone wolf.
Police said the gunman, who was shot dead, was believed to be in his 20s was not a local man, while the FBI believe he may have ‘leanings to radical Islamic terrorism’.
The killings took place less than four miles from where The Voice singer and YouTube star Christina Grimmie, 22, was shot dead at The Plaza Live in Orlando on Friday.
Here are some of pictures from the scene: