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Japanese mother and child stabbed in China in front of school bus

Tokyo/Hong Kong CNN —

A Japanese woman and her child were among three people stabbed by a man on Monday in front of a school bus at a bus stop in eastern China, according to Japanese authorities.

A Chinese woman school bus attendant was also critically injured in the attack in Suzhou, Jiangsu province, an official with the Japanese Nationals Overseas Safety Division of Japan’s Foreign Ministry told CNN.

The mother and child did not suffer life-threatening injuries and were taken to hospital to receive care, the official said.

The Japanese consulate in nearby Shanghai said “a man, possibly Chinese” attacked the mother and her child with a knife.

In a statement Tuesday, police in Suzhou said they arrested an unemployed 52-year-old suspect at the scene, identified by his surname Zhou.

A Chinese national who tried to stop the knife attack was critically injured and was still fighting for their life, police said. One of the injured Japanese nationals had been discharged from hospital, police added.

“The investigation of the case is ongoing, and the criminal behavior will be severely punished in accordance with the law and regulations,” the statement said.

China’s Foreign Ministry on Tuesday expressed regret over the stabbing and vowed to take effective measures to protect foreigners’ safety in the country.

“Such isolated incidents may happen in any country in the world,” spokesperson Mao Ning told a regular news briefing.

Attacks against foreigners are rare in China, but Monday’s stabbing is the second such incident this month in the powerful security state, after four instructors from a US college were stabbed by a Chinese man at a park in the northeastern city of Jilin.

A Chinese tourist who tried to intervene in