Nine people have been killed at a school in Finland after an 18-year-old student opened fire in the town of Tuusula, 60km north of Helsinki.

Seven students, five boys and two girls, and the headmistress of the school were killed in the attack. The gunman, who turned the gun on himself, died in hospital.

The incident occurred at around midday local time inside a classroom at the secondary school of some 450 pupils.

A YouTube video apparently predicting the shooting was posted on the video sharing site some time previously.

The video, entitled 'Jokela High School Massacre - 11/7/2007', shows a still photo of a school that appears to be of the High School. The photo then fragments to reveal a red-tinted picture of a man pointing a gun at the camera.

Police surrounded the school and a city official announced shortly before 2pm that the siege was over.

Finnish President Tarja Halonen has expressed her shock at the shooting, the worst in the country's history.

Despite having the third-highest per capita ratio of handgun ownership in the world, violent incidents are rare at Finnish schools.

According to Finnish media, there have been four stabbings at schools since 1999, none fatal.