Four people were yesterday morning wounded in a stabbing at a major Shanghai hospital, before the knife-wielding attacker was shot and subdued by officers, local police said.
Huangpu District police said on social media that they received emergency reports at 11:30am of a stabbing at downtown Ruijin Hospital.
“The police quickly arrived on the scene and discovered a man holding a group of people hostage with a knife on the hospital’s seventh floor” of the outpatient department, the statement said. “When the suspect intended to injure the hostages and punish the police, the police decisively fired a shot to injure and subdue him.”
Four members of the public were being treated for wounds and are “not in a life-threatening condition,” the statement added.
The attacker’s motive remains unclear and the incident is being investigated, police said.
Video footage on social media showed chaos as visitors clambered under turnstiles to get out of the hospital, while doctors were seen running out with their patients, some in wheelchairs and one on a mobile bed.
A long trail of blood was seen on the marble surface of a flight of stairs in one video.
“It’s very shocking,” said a Shanghai resident who had arrived for a checkup just after the hospital was sealed off, declining to give her name. “This is very despairing. What has happened to this society?”
Hospitals are a flashpoint for many in China, who face issues from touts illegally trading appointment tickets, long queues to see doctors and corruption that can push up the cost of receiving care.
Reports of patients assaulting doctors are also common.
Mass violent crime is rare in China, which strictly prohibits citizens from owning firearms, but knife attacks do happen occasionally.
A man was on Monday arrested after going on a stabbing spree in the city’s downtown Jingan District.
Last month, a 23-year-old man in the eastern city of Ningbo died after being violently stabbed on the street in broad daylight.
Video of the attack near a bus stop went viral on social media.
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