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Three dead in Swiss workplace shooting

MENZNAU, Switzerland — A longtime employee opened fire at a work site in central Switzerland Wednesday, leaving three people dead, including himself, in the country’s second multiple-fatality shooting in two months, police said.

Seven other people were wounded, six of them seriously, in the shooting at Kronospan, a wood-processing company in the small town of Menznau, police said.

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The shooting occurred as Parliament prepares to consider tightening some aspects of Switzerland’s lax gun laws.

The assailant, a 42-year-old man, arrived at the premises shortly after 9 a.m., drew a pistol, and started firing. Police spokesman Kurt Graf said the shooting took place in the building’s canteen area.

Officials did not immediately have further details on the weapon or how the assailant acquired it. They also did not know how the assailant was killed.

‘‘A lot of things are unclear at this stage,’’ said Ida Glanzmann-Hunkeler, a Christian Democrat lawmaker who lives near the scene of the shooting.

Glanzmann-Hunkeler said a proposal would be put before Parliament in the coming weeks that would require greater exchange of information between the gun registries kept by Switzerland’s 26 cantons. Authorities would also record whether a person is considered mentally fit to own a gun, and increase officials’ powers to confiscate weapons if the gun owner is not.

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