(Belgrade) Serbia woke up to sadness on Thursday, the day after an unprecedented school shooting in Belgrade in which a 13-year-old student killed eight classmates and the caretaker.

Classes in all schools in this Balkan country began with a minute of silence to pay tribute to the victims of this massacre.

“I cried all day yesterday. My son went to this school,” Mileva Milosevic, an 85-year-old retired lawyer who lives near the school where the carnage took place, told AFP.

“ I will never forget that, because I have to pass through here every day ”, added this woman.

The Vladislav Ribnikar School, which caters for students aged 7 to 15, in the Vracar district of central Belgrade, was closed on Thursday morning. Police were still present at the entrance to the establishment, noted an AFP journalist.

On Wednesday morning, a 13-year-old student armed with a 9mm pistol opened fire there, killing first the school caretaker and three students in the hallways, before going to a classroom where he shot first at a teacher, then at the students.

He killed a total of seven girls, including one of French nationality, and a boy, all aged 12 or 13, as well as the guard. Six children and their history teacher were injured and hospitalized.

Two students, a boy and a girl, seriously injured, are still in “critical condition”, officials at two hospitals in Belgrade where the injured were admitted Thursday morning.

“ The youth broke in the course of history ”, we read Thursday on the front page of the daily Vecernje Novosti. “ Serbia in shock and in tears ”, affirms the newspaper Danas.

The Institute of Mental Health in Belgrade has opened telephone lines to provide psychological support to students, families of victims and teachers.

After a gathering of thousands of people on Wednesday, the population continues Thursday to pay tribute to the victims in front of the school, where they lay flowers, toys, messages, and light candles.

“Where are we as human beings, where is our empathy? How come we failed to see the problem, both with the person who did this, and with all the other people who led to what happened? asks Ana Djuric, a 37-year-old Belgrade resident, in front of the school.

Three days of national mourning have been decreed by the government from Friday. Celebrations and events planned in this country of less than 7 million people will be largely canceled or reduced to a minimum.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, who addressed the nation on Wednesday evening, lamented “ one of the most difficult days in the contemporary history ” of Serbia.