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Seven children killed, 12 injured in knife attack in China

A young girl rides her bike as she leaves school in Beijing, China, March 14, 2018. (Photo by AFP)

Seven middle school children have been killed and 12 others wounded in an incident where a man attacked them with a knife in northern China, in one of the deadliest such assaults in the country in recent years.

According to the authorities, the knife-wielding man attacked the children while they were on their way home on Friday.

The suspect was arrested and the wounded children were transported to hospital for treatment, according to a statement by the Mizhi County of Shaanxi province on its official social media account. It added that the attack was carried out at around 6:10 pm local time, without providing further details.

The ages of the children were not provided, but middle schoolers are usually between 12 and 15 years old in China.

A local police official said that the case was under investigation and declined to give more details.

Nearly two months ago, a man with a personal grievance carried out a knife attack on a busy Beijing shopping mall, killing a woman and injuring 12 other people.

China maintains a strict code on the use and possession of firearms and authorities mostly blame attacks by knives and homemade explosives on people who are mentally ill or bear social grudges. A pick in such attacks took place in 2010 when nearly 20 children were killed at schools. That prompted officials to order beefed-up security in many schools and education facilities.

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