Value orientation of Chinese society toward the Suzhou attack is very clear: Global Times editorial
Published: Jun 28, 2024 10:45 AM
People walk on a street in Shushan Village in Tong'an Town of Suzhou City, east China's Jiangsu Province, Jan 11, 2024. Photo:Xinhua

People walk on a street in Shushan Village in Tong'an Town of Suzhou City, east China's Jiangsu Province, Jan 11, 2024. Photo:Xinhua

On June 24, a knife attack occurred in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, where a Japanese mother and her son were injured. According to the latest news, Hu Youping, a Chinese national who was also seriously injured while bravely trying to stop the attacker, passed away due to her severe injuries on Wednesday. Local authorities in Suzhou have submitted a request to the city government to award Hu the title of "Suzhou City Bravery Model." We are moved by her courage, saddened by her passing, and hope for the speedy recovery of all the victims in the case. The criminal suspect will face a fair legal judgment, which is certain.

The last image of Hu left to people before her death was to prevent a villain from committing a crime. In this heinous incident, an ordinary Chinese person instinctively stepped forward at a critical moment of life and death, using her body to block the sharp knife aimed at other innocent people. This act of righteousness is touching and has been highly recognized by the whole society in China, as seen from the official posthumous award and the online memorials.

We express our humanitarian condolences to all victims regardless of nationality. At the same time, it is necessary to point out that any society is complex, and even in places with good public security governance, it is difficult to completely eliminate vicious attacks. While we condemn criminal behavior, it is also important to recognize the sense of justice displayed by ordinary Chinese citizens in response to criminal acts. The recent incident in Jilin Province, where four foreigners and one Chinese tourist were stabbed, was also an isolated incident, and there were Chinese people who acted bravely. When confronted with violence, there is no distinction between Chinese and foreigners, only a battle between justice and crime. It reflects the kind, friendly, and courageous spirit of the entire Chinese society, a trait that has been embedded in the DNA of Chinese society.

We noticed that public opinion in Japan resonates to a considerable extent with Chinese society. When it was reported that this woman was seriously injured, many Japanese netizens expressed admiration for her act of extending a helping hand, prayed for her physical condition, and repeatedly thanked her. These are the most authentic sentiments in China-Japan people-to-people exchanges. It should be noted that whether it is a Chinese woman who bravely protected innocent people, or Japanese netizens expressing gratitude to this woman, both sides share common values, which are a strong condemnation of violence and admiration for acts of bravery.

After the incident, some foreign media outlets have distorted the case. There are also some politicizing the isolated criminal case with political manipulation. Returning to the case itself, these foreign media outlets should take a comprehensive view of the reactions of Chinese society. After the incident, the perpetrator was caught on the spot, the act of bravery was rewarded, and condemning violence became a strong consensus on the internet. The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson expressed regret at the first time and emphasized that China will continue to take effective measures to protect the safety of all foreign nationals in China. The Chinese society is very clear about which is good and evil, right and wrong. There is no controversy.

China is undoubtedly still one of the safest countries in the world. The country is continuously moving toward social stability and the safety of its people, and foreign nationals in China will also enjoy a more legal and secure living environment. According to data from the Chinese Ministry of Public Security, in 2023, the number of criminal cases and public security cases handled by national public security agencies decreased by 12.9 percent and 9.7 percent respectively compared to 2019, with a homicide rate of 0.46 per 100,000 people. China is one of the countries with the lowest homicide rate, the lowest crime rate, and the fewest gun-related incidents in the world. Recently, many foreign bloggers' videos of traveling in China have gone viral on Western social media platforms, which also proves this point.

Suzhou is a city in China with a large number of foreign residents, and many foreign enterprises have set up offices here. This is also a microcosm of the integration between China and the world over the past 40 years of reform and opening-up. China's door to the outside world will only open wider, welcoming friendly individuals from all countries, including Japanese, to travel, invest and develop in China. As more foreigners come to China, they will experience a friendlier, more welcoming, and legal environment, just like the foreign video bloggers who have traveled to China have witnessed.