BEIJING (AP) — Knife-wielding assailants attacked people at a train station in southwestern China on Saturday in what authorities called a terrorist attack and police fatally shot five of the assailants, leaving 28 people dead and 113 injured, state media said.
China’s official Xinhua News Agency did not identify who might have been responsible for the late-evening attack at the Kunming Railway Station in Yunnan province, but said authorities considered it to be “an organized, premeditated violent terrorist attack.”
In an indication of how seriously authorities viewed the attack, one of China’s deadliest in recent years, the country’s top police official, Politburo member Meng Jianzhu, was on route to Kunming, the Communist Party-run People’s Daily reported.
The violence in Kunming came at a sensitive time as political leaders in Beijing prepared for Wednesday’s opening of the annual meeting of the nominal legislature where the government of President Xi Jinping will deliver its first one-year work report.
A Xinhua reporter on the scene in Kunming said several suspects had been “controlled” while police continued their investigation of people at the station. The reporter said firefighters and emergency medical personnel were at the station and rushing injured people to hospitals for treatment.
The authorities said five suspects were shot dead but that their identities had not yet been confirmed, Xinhua reported. Overall, 28 people were confirmed dead and 113 injured, it said.