Knife-wielding woman wounds 14 children at China kindergarten

A knife-wielding woman wounded 14 children at a kindergarten in western China on Friday.

The attacker, a 39-year-old woman armed with a kitchen knife, was taken into custody in the city of Chongqing and no motive for the assault was given by police.

The attack at the Xinshiji Kindergarten in the city’s outskirts took place at 9:30am (01:30GMT) as the children were returning to class, police said.

The victims were taken to hospital while guards and staff at the kindergarten restrained the attacker.

Footage posted on social media showed injured children walking to ambulances from the school gate, with some being placed on gurneys.

No information about the attacker was given, other than her surname, Liu.

Violent crime is rare in China compared with many other countries, especially in major cities where security is tight, but there has been a series of knife and axe attacks in recent years, many targeting children.

Such assaults have been blamed largely on the mentally ill or people bearing grudges.

Chinese law restricts the sale and possession of firearms, and mass attacks are generally carried out with knives or homemade explosives.

Almost 20 children were killed in school attacks in 2010, prompting a response from top government officials and leading many schools to add gates and security guards.

In June, a man used a kitchen knife to attack three boys and a mother near a school in Shanghai, killing two of the children. Police said the assailant was unemployed and carried out the attack “to take revenge on society”.

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