9 dead, dozens hurt as driver rams into crowd in China

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Blurred images of stricken people lie in a square in Hengyang city, after they were run over by a vehicle. (Twitter)
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Hengyang city in China’s Hunan province.
Updated 12 September 2018

9 dead, dozens hurt as driver rams into crowd in China

  • Police have taken the driver — a man in his mid-40s — into custody
  • Pictures from the scene and shared on social media showed a red SUV with a crushed bumper

BEIJING: A driver plowed into a crowded public square in China, killing nine and injuring 46, local officials said Wednesday.
The incident occurred at 7:35 p.m. (1135 GMT), according to a statement on the official social media account of Hengyang city in central Hunan province.
Police have taken the driver — a man in his mid-40s — into custody, according to a report published by the state-funded news website The Paper, which added that a person matching the description of the alleged assailant had previously been jailed on drug charges.
Authorities said they were investigating the incident, but did not elaborate further.
Pictures reportedly from the scene and shared on social media showed a red SUV with a crushed bumper.
Videos of the incident circulated briefly on social media, but were quickly removed.
Violent crime has risen in China in recent decades as the country’s economic boom has widened the gap between the rich and the poor. Police have also previously blamed such attacks on militant separatists.
In 2013, two tourists were killed when a car rammed into bystanders on Beijing’s iconic Tiananmen Square before bursting into flames.
Three attackers also died in the incident, which Beijing blamed on separatists from the restive western region of Xinjiang.


At least 13 reported missing as torrential rain hits Japan’s Kyushu

Updated 12 min 17 sec ago

At least 13 reported missing as torrential rain hits Japan’s Kyushu

  • Highest warning for floods and landslides triggered by the rain “never seen” before in the region

TOKYO: Unprecedented torrential rains pounded Japan’s southern island of Kyushu, where at least 13 people have gone missing as weather officials warned against the threat of floods and landslides, public broadcaster NHK said on Saturday.
Television broadcast images of houses and cars submerged in muddy waters in the prefecture of Kumamoto, where NHK said the flooding Kuma River was cutting off homes and had washed away a bridge.
Japan’s Meteorological Agency issued its highest grade of warning for floods and landslides triggered by the rain “never seen” before in the region, the broadcaster added.
More than 100 appeals for rescue flowed in to local authorities but they could not respond to all immediately, NHK said.