Muscat: Omani police have arrested a man for knifing to death a policeman at the City Centre mall in Muscat. Two people were wounded in the attack, including the suspect. The deceased was identified as Saud Al Rawahi.
Earlier, there were reports that the killing was a result of a shooting. There were also reports that the person accused of the murder carried a document indicating that he was mentally ill.
Pictures and videos of the incident went viral on social media platforms, and the police called on people not to circulate images or videos related to the crime.
The incident occurred around 1.40pm. The injured person is in stable condition at Sultan Qaboos University Hospital, according to the police.
Tributes and condolences have poured in on social media for the fallen martyr.
The hashtag ‘Martyr of the nation, Saud Al Rawahi’ is being used to express grief and sorrow by users and to pay condolence to his bereaved family.
Twitter user Basim said the deceased gave his life to save others. “Rest in peace martyr”, he said.
Mohammad Qasim, another user, said that despite the murder, crime is very rare in Oman. It had made a huge impact precisely because society is not used to such crimes.
Other users called on the Omani authorities to investigate the authenticity of the document carried by the accused that he was mentally ill.
Ahmad Al Jabri, one of the witnesses, told Gulf News that the accused was roaming with a knife in the mall, which caused panic among shoppers. “I heard screams. I rushed to the spot. It was shocking to see a man [lying] in a pool of blood,” he said.
Murder crimes are very rare in Oman. Only 10 murders have been reported in 2017.