Stabbing of US College Instructors in China Sparks International Outrage

Hong Kong – Four American college instructors teaching in China were victims of a rare violent crime targeting foreigners in the security state. The educators from Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa, were stabbed while visiting a public park in the city of Jilin, northeastern China, as part of a partnership program with Beihua University.

Cornell College President Jonathan Brand confirmed the incident, stating that none of their students were involved in the program. Footage circulating on Chinese social media showed the aftermath of the attack, with the victims covered in blood stains but conscious and speaking on their cell phones. The attack took place in Beishan Park, a popular green space near Beihua University, on a public holiday in China.

According to China’s Foreign Ministry, the four teachers were immediately hospitalized after the attack and are not in critical condition. Details about the motive and identity of the perpetrators remain unclear. One of the victims, identified as David Zabner, is reportedly recovering well after being treated for his injuries.

Knife attacks are not uncommon in China, where strict gun control measures are in place. While the country has seen instances of public stabbings, attacks against foreigners are rare. The incident in Jilin has sparked concern among officials in Iowa, with Governor Kim Reynolds calling it a “horrifying attack.”

The attack comes at a time when China is trying to attract more international visitors and enhance educational exchanges with the United States. Despite the incident, China’s Foreign Ministry reassured that the safety of foreigners in China is a top priority and that educational cooperation with the US will not be affected.

Cornell College initiated a partnership with Beihua University in 2018 to promote educational exchanges. Chinese leader Xi Jinping, during his visit to the US, announced plans to invite 50,000 young Americans to China for exchange programs in the coming years. While China has strict gun controls and low rates of violent crime, incidents like the recent stabbing serve as a reminder of ongoing safety challenges in the country.