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Several hurt in South Korean 'stabbing rampage': police

Several hurt in South Korean 'stabbing rampage': police
August 3, 2023 Web Desk

SEOUL, South Korea (AFP) - A man went on a "stabbing rampage" near a South Korean subway station, police said Thursday, with as many as 14 people reported wounded two weeks after a similar attack killed one person.

The attack took place near the Seohyeon subway station in Bundang, about 20 kilometres (12 miles) southeast of Seoul, an official at the National Police Agency told AFP. The suspect "had been arrested at the scene", the official said.

The Yonhap News Agency reported that 14 people were wounded in the incident after the attacker "drove a car into a pedestrian walkway" and went on a stabbing spree at a department store.

The suspect, believed to be in his twenties, stabbed nine people and wounded 5 others with his vehicle. At least eight of the stabbing victims are in critical condition, Yonhap reported. Unverified images of Thursday's attack showed what appeared to be a floor stained with blood drops and at least one emergency medical helicopter.

Police told Yonhap that the suspect made "incomprehensible statements" after he was detained. One person was killed and three wounded in another stabbing attack in the South Korean capital on July 21. 

South Korea is typically an extremely safe country, with a murder rate of 1.3 per 100,000 people in 2021, according to official statistics. By comparison, the United States has 7.8 homicide deaths per 100,000 people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Bundang, an affluent satellite city of Seoul, generally has a reputation for safe streets and residential neighbourhoods but the two stabbings triggered concern online. "The attack (near the) Seohyeon station is really terrifying," one wrote on Twitter, which is being rebranded as X.

"How can we feel safe and comfortable going outside with incidents like this happening?"