Eight children have been found stabbed to death at a house in Cairns, Australia.
The children are reportedly aged between 18 months and 15 years old.
Police were called to a property in the suburb of Manoora following reports of a woman with serious injuries.
During the search of the house the bodies of the children were discovered.
The 34-year-old woman is reportedly the mother of seven of the children. The eighth child is thought to be a family member.
The mother is said to be in a stable condition at a hospital where she is being questioned by police.
Queensland Police Detective Inspector Bruno Asnicar said: "There are no suspects at this point. It's very early days. The woman in hospital is the mother of most of the children.
"I am not able to confirm how the children died."
He added that there was no reason for the public to be concerned and said it was a "tragic, tragic event".
Lisa Thaiday, who said she was the woman's cousin, said another sibling, a 20-year-old man, came home and found his brothers and sisters dead inside the house.
She said: "We're a big family... I just can't believe it."
Cairns Post reporter Scott Forbes, at the scene, told Sky News: "I've spoken to some of the family members and they say the woman, who is the biological mother, actually has more children but the other kids weren't at home at the time. So of the children she does have, eight of them are now dead.
"Many of the people here are actually connected to the family or relatives of the family. They are very shocked. They said they were a happy family and were enthusiastic about Christmas.
"They've said she was a very proud mother who was very protective of her children, so everyone lining the streets here is reeling right now."
The street is in lock down and a crime scene will remain in place for at least another day, police said.
Cairns MP Michael Trout told Sky News the close-knit community was in shock over the "dreadful tragedy".
"How can anyone harm innocent children is on everyone's lips at this moment," he said.
Media outlets reported that the neighbourhood was predominantly inhabited by indigenous Aboriginal Australians, and was known by residents to have a high crime rate.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott called the events in Cairns "heartbreaking" and acknowledged that these were "trying days" for Australia.
Queensland premier Campbell Newman said he was "deeply saddened" and "shocked".
"My thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of those concerned."
The deaths come as Australia is still feeling the shock of the deadly siege in a Sydney cafe earlier this week.