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Former diplomat shoots wife and kills himself in Vienna

An 85-year-old former diplomat shot his wife in Vienna this morning, before turning the gun on himself and taking his own life.

The 45-year-old woman is critically ill in hospital after her husband shot her twice in the abdomen following a row, according to neighbours.

Emergency services were called after the wife ran out of her house and called for help from her neighbours. Whilst she was outside, the 82-year-old man who was Austria's former ambassador to Venezuela, shot himself in the head.

The incident happened at the couple's family home in Vienna's Favoriten district. The couple had met whilst she had worked for him as a housekeeper and cook for him in South America, before they married and moved back to Austria around 20 years ago.

Neighbours reported that the couple had frequently quarrelled but on Tuesday morning it had escalated and at around 10:00 the man had pulled out his pistol, which he owned legally, and fired at his wife.

The 82-year-old had previously been in the media back in 1980, when he was held hostage by guerilla group M-19 whilst he was ambassador to Colombia. The hostages were held for two months, although the Austrian ambassador was released earlier by appealing to the perpetrators that he needed to be with his former wife who was seriously ill.

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