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18 July, 2024
 
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Four U.S. university staff stabbed in China park (video)

Incident occurred during teaching exchange program in Jilin City; suspect detained

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Four staff members from a U.S. university were stabbed in Beishan Park in northeast China, officials said Monday.

Video shared on social media showed bloodied individuals lying on the ground and being loaded into ambulances. Iowa politician Adam Zabner confirmed that his brother, David, was among the victims. The group was visiting a temple in Jilin City as part of a teaching exchange program between Iowa’s Cornell College and Jilin’s Beihua University.

"I spoke to David... he is recovering from his injuries and doing well. My family is incredibly grateful that David survived this attack," Zabner said.

Cornell College President Jonathan Bran stated that the four instructors were accompanied by a faculty member from Beihua University when the incident occurred. A 55-year-old suspect was detained the same day, according to police, who have yet to determine a motive.

China’s foreign ministry described the stabbing as a random incident. "All the injured individuals were immediately taken to the hospital and were given appropriate critical care; no one's life is in danger," a spokesperson said.

The U.S. State Department acknowledged the incident and is monitoring the situation. Iowa’s Congress representative, Mariannette Miller-Meeks, indicated on social media that efforts are underway to ensure the victims receive quality medical care and are safely transported out of China.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has pledged to invite 50,000 Americans to study in the country this year. Currently, fewer than 900 Americans are in China, compared to more than 290,000 Chinese students in the United States, according to U.S. figures.

The State Department maintains a Level 3 travel advisory for mainland China, urging Americans to "reconsider" travel due to the risk of "arbitrary enforcement of local laws, including exit bans and wrongful detentions."

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