Policeman killed, three wounded in shooting near Bulgarian school

SOFIA (Reuters) - A Bulgarian policeman was killed and three officers wounded in a shootout with an armed man who had threatened the pupils and the headmaster of a school in the central town of Lyaskovets, the police said on Friday.

Interior Minister Tsvetlin Yovchev identified the man as 52-year-old Petko Petkov, and said he had opened fire on police officers before barricading himself into his apartment opposite the school, which was closed at the time. "The man was wounded within the course of the operation, which is now over," Mr Yovchev told Parliament about the shootings in Lyaskovets, a town some 220km east of Sofia.

The police said the shootout began after they arrived at Petkov's apartment to question him about letters he had sent to the school headmaster, complaining about noise and threatening teachers and pupils.

Mr Nikolay Kozhuharov, the director of the school, said Petkov had complained that the noise of the children playing in the schoolyard disturbed him and his mother.

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