The suspect who slashed 22 children in an elementary school in central China might have been paranoid about the world coming to end, authorities said on Monday.
But it didn’t prevent even the usually supportive state media from saying that official response to the violent incident was “slow and cold” and that details about the case remain sketchy.
According to reports quoting the police, Min Yongjun (previously reported as Min Yingjun) is thought to have burst into an elderly woman’s house near the elementary school of Chenpeng village in Guangshan county in central China, around 7am on Friday, hitting her and stabbing her with a kitchen knife he picked up in the house. Min then rushed to the school, and allegedly knifed 23 students, before being subdued by teachers and police.
“Initial police investigation found Min, a long-term epilepsy sufferer, had been strongly psychologically affected by rumours of the upcoming end of the world predicted by ancient prophecy,” state media reported.
Rao Mingsheng, health director for Guangshan, said on Monday that none of the people injured in the attack was currently in a critical condition. Some remained locally hospitalised, while others have been transferred to bigger hospitals.
State-run Global Times newspaper made comparisons with the shootout in the US. “The two school tragedies have exposed the powerlessness of both the US and China in certain aspects of society.”