More than 40 people were injured at a beer festival in Kosovo after a toy gun was fired and someone was heard shouting “Isis” as part of an elaborate prank that prompted a stampede.
The fake terror alert caused festival attendees to panic, pushing past each other as they rushed to leave the event in the central square of the capital Pristina.
Amid false reports a 15-year-old boy had been shot by terrorists from the extremist group, the sudden crush left two visitors critically injured in hospital, and a further 40 with minor injuries.
People ran from the square into nearby alleyways to hide and lost their shoes and bags in the panic to get away, according to MailOnline.
Local witnesses said they heard a loud voice above the crowd shouting “Run, run, Isis is here”, before a gunshot issued from the fake weapon and people in the crowd began screaming in a scene of chaos.
One witness, Arton, who attended the event, told Kosovo media: “We noticed that something was not right. People began to push and to jump over each other.
“I was in the middle of it, people came pushing past us and knocked us over. People were crying, shouting they have to flee.”
Kosovo has one of the highest proportion of gun owners in Europe, with estimates suggesting up to 350,000 of the country's 1.8 million population possess firearms.
The organiser of the beer festival, Ekrem Tahiri, confirmed the gunshot came from a person shooting a toy gun and said none of the attendees were in danger during the event.
Meanwhile, the mayor of Pristina said he had decided to revoke the licence for the festival due to lack of capacity, and to verify whether everyone attending was the required 18 years of age.
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