June 14, 2024

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China: Four Americans stabbed, suspect arrested

China: Four Americans stabbed, suspect arrested

Beijing on Tuesday called it an “isolated case” and a suspect was arrested in China after four American university professors were stabbed.

Attacks on foreigners, especially Westerners, are extremely rare in China, where the streets are generally very safe at all times. The number of physical assaults there is infinitely lower than in the US or Western Europe.

Cornell College University in the state of Iowa (Central America) said on Monday that the four Americans worked as professors at the higher education institution and were participating in an academic exchange in China.

They were injured during a “serious incident”, the establishment insisted.

A spokesman for the US State Department spoke of “a stabbing attack in Jilin”, located in the province of the same name in northeastern China.

China confirmed the raid on Tuesday.

“A suspect named Mr. Qi was arrested on the same day” of the attack at a park in Jilin, the city’s police said in a press release, adding that the man in question was 55 years old.

Besides the four Americans, a Chinese tourist who tried to intervene was injured, police said.

Five people are still hospitalized and are in stable condition, the press release stressed.

A safe country

No intent is given at this point.

Beijing previously called it “an isolated case”.

“Police have made a preliminary assessment that this is an isolated case. The investigation is ongoing,” Chinese diplomatic spokesman Lin Jian said in an interview during a regular press briefing on Tuesday.

Unverified videos posted on foreign social media since Monday show several people being treated on the ground, with blood stains on their clothes and the floor.

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“China is generally recognized as one of the safest countries in the world. It has always taken effective measures and will continue to take appropriate measures to effectively protect the safety of all foreigners in China,” Lin Jian assured.

The spokesperson said he hoped the incident would not affect academic exchanges between the two countries.

An Iowa lawmaker, Adam Zapner, told US television channel CNN that his brother was one of the victims.

“He’s fine.” He was “stitched up and seems to be recovering,” said Mr. Zapner said he spoke to his brother on Tuesday morning.