20 children injured in attack at Chinese primary school

Knifeman stabs 20 children in attack at Chinese primary school

Three children suffered serious but non-life-threatening injuries, the Xicheng district government said on its social media account.

It said all of the wounded pupils were taken to hospital and were receiving treatment.

The suspect was apprehended at the scene and an investigation has been launched, according to reports.

Surnamed Jia, the 49-year-old assailant was a contractor hired by the school for daily maintenance work.

Video has leaked onto Chinese social media of school administrators attempting to explain details of the attack to a group of concerned parents.

Parents gather at an entrance gate to the Beijing No. 1 Affiliated Elementary School of Xuanwu Normal School following an attack in Beijing, China, Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019.

According to a tweet by state-run tabloid Global Times, the suspect used a hammer to carry out the assault.

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Police in Xicheng declined to comment when reached by phone.

Police told CCTV that Jia's contract, due to expire in January, had not been renewed by the labor company that had dispatched him to the school, and that he had attacked the students to "vent his discontent".

Violent crime is rare in China but there have been several attacks on school children in recent years.

In October, a 39-year-old woman stormed a kindergarten in Chongqing, southwest China, injuring 14 kids with a kitchen knife.

Such incidents have forced authorities to increase security around schools and led to calls for more research into the root causes of such acts.

In 2010, almost 20 children were killed in knife attacks outside school gates.

In November, a driver rammed his vehicle into a group of children crossing a street in front of an elementary school in northeastern Liaoning province, killing five people and injuring at least 19.

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