News / Asia

5 Killed as Car Crashes into Beijing's Tiananmen Square

Three Killed as Car Crashes into Beijing's Tiananmen Squarei
October 28, 2013 9:37 AM
Three people were killed and at least 11 injured on Monday when a sports utility vehicle ran into pedestrians and caught fire at an entrance to Beijing's Tiananmen Square, the site of 1989 pro-democracy protests bloodily suppressed by the government.
Chinese authorities say five people are dead and at least 38 injured after a sports utility vehicle crashed into a crowd in Tiananmen Square, burst into flames.
Beijing police say the incident occurred shortly after noon Monday when a jeep rammed a section of a bridge leading into the Forbidden City.
Police say that all three individuals in the car, the driver and two others, were killed in the crash. A notice on the police social media account reported several bystanders and police were injured. Some foreigners were reported among those hurt.
Site of Tiananmen Square crashSite of Tiananmen Square crash
Site of Tiananmen Square crash
Site of Tiananmen Square crash
Images of the incident were quickly removed from China’s social media sites, but could be seen on websites beyond the reach of Chinese authorities. In the photos, flames could be seen rising high above the jeep, not far from a large portrait of Mao Zedong.
Shortly after the incident, authorities locked down the area and erected a fence around the vehicle. Some reporters who photographed the incident were detained by police and forced to delete their footage. 
​It remains unclear if Monday’s incident was an accident or an intentional act carried out at the politically symbolic heart of Beijing. Tiananmen Square was the site of pro-democracy protests in 1989 that were brutally crushed by authorities and it remains an area under tight surveillance.
Authorities have said little about a possible motive or what might have caused the jeep to drive through a barricade and into crowds before crashing and catching fire.
Although Chinese authorities quickly removed any postings about the incident from China’s Twitter-like Weibo microblog - including the statement from the Beijing police’s official site - some individuals wondered whether it was a terrorist attack or if the individuals had deliberately set themselves on fire.
Internal security is one of China’s biggest challenges and the country spends more on monitoring and policing its massive population than it does on its military.

  • A man installs a security camera  at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Nov. 1, 2013, very close to the site of a fatal vehicle crash in which five people died.
  • Soldiers and a policeman stand guard at Xinhuamen Gate, the main entrance of the Zhongnanhai leadership compound, the residence of Chinese President Xi Jinping, located in the center of Beijing, Oct. 31, 2013.
  • A paramilitary soldier patrols near visitors posing for souvenir pictures at Tiananmen Square, Beijing, China, Nov. 1, 2013.
  • A man installs a security camera at the Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Oct. 31, 2013.
  • Vehicles travel along Chang'an Avenue as smoke raises in front of a portrait of late Chinese Chairman Mao Zedong at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Oct. 28, 2013.
  • Crowds react to a car accident at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Oct. 28, 2013. (Image taken from weibo)
  • Wounded people are seen after a car accident at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Oct. 28, 2013. (Image taken from weibo)
  • Security it seen after a car accident at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Oct. 28, 2013. (Image taken from weibo)
  • Chinese paramilitary police and uniformed police seal off pavement leading to Tiananmen Gate, following a car fire in Beijing, Oct. 28, 2013.
  • Police officers set up barriers in front of the giant portrait of the late Chinese Chairman Mao Zedong as they clean up after a car accident at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Oct. 28, 2013.
  • A police officer walks in front of the giant portrait of the late Chinese Chairman Mao Zedong as other police clean up after a car crash at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Oct. 28, 2013.

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Comment Sorting
by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
October 30, 2013 10:04 PM
Freedom of press, right to know should be guaranteed in China.

by: Mr. Quasar from: China
October 28, 2013 11:15 PM
There is no doubt that you have rights to choose which stories you want to tell the readers. And if you just like to report the negative side when it comes to China that's no big deal. But just please don't tell lies on purpose. It is very easy to find out reports of this event on so many Chinese website including the famous ones (such as and etc.) and the details are updated on weibo and qq (the most popular IM in China) all the time since it happened. You American Medias apparently have the freedom of expression but not the freedom of telling lies. Otherwise, you may just change your name from VOA to LOA - Lies of America!
In Response

by: Mark from: Salt Lake City
October 30, 2013 12:28 AM
China are run by the most greedy capitalist criminals in the world, the Chinese government. They are even killing off their people for pure greed by poisoning the air, water and soil. That's the legacy of this "Mao" bastard.
In Response

by: Jack Obama from: china
October 29, 2013 10:23 PM
I agree with you. we can also find this kind of events happend in usa, uk, europe and somewhere else. So that doesn't mean china is special.
In Response

by: Lei Xingti from: not china
October 29, 2013 8:59 AM
Mr Quasar, there is lies and then there is sweeping it all under the rug, both are equally dishonest. A comparison between search results for this news story on Baidu and Google couldn't be more different. Perhaps you can enlighten me on my error? A world without liars, now wouldn't that be nice!

by: Dr. Han from: China
October 28, 2013 2:24 PM
and with this... ISLAMIC TERRORISM has come to China...
In Response

by: Ian from: Taiuyan, Shanxi, PRC
October 28, 2013 11:11 PM
really????..........what evidence is it that it is Islamic or a terrorist incident. OH, and the XinJiang bombing of recent years I guess are really just kids playing with fireworks. If your going to comment......use facts

by: Samurai from: Japan
October 28, 2013 3:07 AM
Is this a movement like the Arab spring? This must be a suicide bombing. The Chinese authorities has immediately erased the web site concerning this incident. I hope that all Chinese people are liberated from dictatorship by the Chinese Communist Party.
In Response

by: Dive from: Beijing
October 28, 2013 10:33 AM
did you search the chinese web ever?how you know the government erased the website concern about the incident?i am in beijing,i can search all the information about the incident,and download the pictures about this.we welcome the difference political mind,but,all things you say should be base on truth.i invite you to beijing to see a ture china.
In Response

by: easy
October 28, 2013 10:23 AM
Take it easy. If you link it to too many wrong & bad things, you don't understand cn or the authorities yet. Also you can see this news was unfrozen & published already.
In Response

by: Wangchuk from: NYC
October 28, 2013 10:12 AM
There is no evidence yet on what the driver's motives were or if it was an accident. People should not rush to judgment & blame Muslims. There are for more bombings and suicides by Chinese people with personal grievances against corrupt CCP officials than Muslim extremists in China. Recently a handicapped Chinese man tried to detonate a bomb in Beijing airport. What we do know is the CCP trying very hard to prevent news coverage of this event inside mainland China. Another example of CCP censorship.

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