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22 June 2024

China police say man deliberately targeted students


Police in northeastern China say the suspect in a car crash that killed five elementary school students and injured 19 other people deliberately targeted his victims, in what appears to be the latest in a pattern of mass attacks using vehicles.

The 29-year-old suspect, identified only by his surname, Han, plowed his car into a crowd of children outside a primary school in northeastern city of Huludao.

Security camera footage showed Han swerving into the crowd of children before driving off.

The official Xinhua News Agency quoted police Friday saying Han was unemployed and had been quarreling with his wife. It said he set a plan to use his car in an attack, but the children had been a random target.

Two similar attacks in recent months killed 13 people.

Five dead, 19 hurt as car rams into children in China

A car rammed into a group of children crossing a street in front of an elementary school in northeast China on Thursday, killing five children and injuring 19 others, state media said.

Police took the driver into custody and are investigating the cause of the incident in Huludao, Liaoning province, the official CCTV broadcaster said on its Weibo social media account.

Of the nineteen that were injured, sixteen were children. Two teachers and a passerbyer were also hurt, said CCTV.

Unverified videos circulating on social media appeared to show a car veering onto the wrong side of the road and ploughing through the line of pupils, with the impact from the crash throwing bodies across the road.

Other gut-wrenching footage showed at least two small children lying unconscious and bleeding on the street. The screams and cries of children could be heard in the background, as onlookers milled around the scene of the collision.

An eyewitness quoted by Chinese media site Sina News said that he saw "children's shoes" and "traces of blood" on the ground near the accident.

Citing local police in Huludao city, the Chinese media report also said that police caught the driver after he tried to flee the scene.

Victims of the crash are undergoing medical treatment, according to CCTV. The incident happened around noon.

The ages of the victims were not released.

Police from Jianchang county in Huludao city did not immediately respond to AFP requests for comment.