National News

China police kill man who took 50 students hostage

By The Associated Press

BEIJING - A convicted criminal who took 50 elementary school students and a teacher hostage was shot and killed by police in central China on Tuesday, the Public Security Ministry said.

Officers on the scene were searching the school in the Hubei province city of Qianjiang for any explosives that might have been hidden by the suspect, the ministry said on its microblog.

State media reports identified the hostage taker as Zhang Zeqing, who previously served prison terms for robbery and illegal gun making.

They said he had agreed to exchange the students and teacher for the deputy mayor of the surrounding town of Haokou, but was shot after he poured gasoline over the official.

No motive was given for the hostage taking and police said they had no additional details. There was no mention of injuries to the hostages and the deputy mayor's condition wasn't known.

The reports said Zhang possessed a knife and some type of explosives.

China has suffered a spate of school attacks in recent years, most linked to mentally ill people or those bearing grudges.

As a result, security has been heavily increased at many schools, with entrances barred and guards posted.

China has also ordered faster response times for police and emergency services following a series of deadly attacks blamed on Islamic extremists.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

Views split on bigger medical role for firefighters
 
Teen boy stabbed during altercation in Abbotsford
 
Fraser Youth Pride event held in Abbotsford
Still no answers for mom mourning loss of baby daughter
 
Election 2014: Cindy Schafer to run again for school trustee position
 
Snow-clearing in Abbotsford costs $55,000 a day
Police, paramedics return to South Surrey brawl house
 
Bublé pops in at RCMP open house
 
Possible jumper shuts down Pitt bridge

Community Events, September 2014

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Sep 25 edition online now. Browse the archives.