An explosion was reported outside the US embassy in Beijing on Thursday morning. No casualties were reported in the incident. The US embassy in Beijing confirmed the explosion outside the compound in the Chinese capital and said that there were no injuries to embassy staff.
“There was an explosion at approximately 1pm today in the public space off the southeast corner of the embassy compound. According to the embassy’s regional security officer, there was one individual who detonated a bomb. Other than the bomber, there were no injuries. The local police responded,” an embassy spokeswoman was quoted in the South China Morning Post.
The Beijing Police, however, pinned down the explosion to a man who set off a “suspected firecracker device”.
“At about 1pm on July 26, a man ignited a suspected firecracker device at the intersection of Tianze Road and Anjialou Road in Chaoyang District, causing a deflagration, causing his own hand injury. He is not in any life-threatening situation. The nearby patrol police was quickly deployed to the scene. The situation is under control and the man was sent to the hospital, and no other personnel were injured at the scene.”
The suspect has been identified as 26-year-old Jiang Moumou from Tongliao city, Inner Mongolia. Currently, the police are further investigating the case
Photos and videos circulating on social media showed smoke billowing from outside the Embassy which is surrounded by police personnel. The incident occurred in an area which has a number of embassies including the Indian embassy.
Beijing is considered one of the most secure cities because of its massive camera surveillance systems.
Chinese officials did not immediately comment on the incident but newspapers like Global Times put out reports soon after the incident, claiming that the incident was a self-immolation attempt by a Chinese woman who had been detained.
The paper subsequently claimed that there was no clarity on whether the explosion and the detention of the woman were related.
Chinese media says incident was a self immolation attempt by a woman. Police claim to have detained the woman and allege she sprayed gasoline on herself outside the US embassy in Beijing.@IndianExpress pic.twitter.com/7Yo5az5ZZo
— zeeshan shaikh (@zeeshansahafi) July 26, 2018