Knifeman in Henan attacks primary school children

Suspect said to have mental problems; two pupils and elderly woman in serious condition

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 15 December, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 15 December, 2012, 4:07am

A knife-wielding man attacked 22 children and a woman at a primary school in central China yesterday.

Police detained the suspect, who attacked the children at the entrance of the Chenpeng village Primary School in Guangshan county, Henan, at 7.40am.

All the injured were taken to local hospitals and at least two of them, one pupil and an 85-year-old woman, were in serious condition, Xinhua quoted local police as saying. The elderly woman and most of the injured children suffered head wounds, the agency said.

The suspect was identified as Min Yingjun , a 36-year-old fellow villager. He was apprehended by police shortly after the attack, local authorities said. His motive was not clear.

The county authorities said they were attaching a great deal of importance to the case and had sent senior officials to the school, the Guangshan People's Hospital and the county's Traditional Chinese Medicine Hospital to supervise treatment of the victims. A special team had been established to investigate the incident and deal with claims for compensation.

Xinhua and the China News Service said Min was suffering from a mental disorder, quoting villagers and local officials.

There have been several similar attacks in recent years.

Two months ago, three children were killed and 13 injured when a man armed with a machete rushed into a private day-care centre in Pingnan county, Guangxi , and attacked the pupils.

In March 2010, eight children were killed and five injured after they were slashed by a man outside a primary school in Nanping , Fujian . In the two months following that attack, at least eight primary and kindergarten pupils were killed and 57 children injured in four similar attacks in Guangxi, Guangdong, Jiangsu and Shaanxi .