A deranged Chinese man attacked two Americans and their Chinese tour guide, who were visiting the Drum Tower in Beijing, a 13th century tourist attraction, Saturday, killing one and seriously injuring another before taking his own life by jumping from a balcony.
The pair are relatives of a coach for the US Olympic men’s volleyball team.
“They are deeply saddened and shocked,” Darryl Seibel, a spokesman for the U.S. Olympic Committee, said of the volleyball team, the Associated Press is reporting.
The Chinese state news agency, Xinhua, identified the attacker as Tang Yongming, 47, from the eastern city of Hangzhou.
The attack occurred in broad daylight, hours after the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympics and sent shock waves through the region. China is known for its low rate of violence against foreigners due to tight government controls. The government punishes crimes against foreigners more harshly than crimes against other Chinese.
In March, a hostage taker on a bus in Xi’an was shot and killed by a police sniper.
President Bush said he and his wife were saddened by the attack and offered his thoughts and prayers for the families. He said the U.S. government will provide assistance to the family if needed.
U.S. Ambassador Clark T. Randt is said to have visited the surviving female victim at an area hospital.
The State Department has not issued any warnings to Americans in China.