Fourteen hurt in South Korea stabbing incident near Seoul

By Hyonhee Shin and Minwoo Park

SEOUL (Reuters) -A man in a South Korean commuter town rammed his car into passers-by on Thursday then got out and stabbed some, wounding 14 people in the incident near the capital Seoul, police said.

The unexplained attack in Seongnam came days after another rare stabbing attack in South Korea which killed one person and wounded three others.

Police said Thursday’s assailant was arrested after apparently attacking people randomly. Media reports described him as a man in his 20s with a delivery job and suffering from some mental health issues.

The attack occurred near Seohyeon station, an area about 20 km (12 miles) from Seoul that has a large department store and other shops and where many commuters live.

Media reports said the man had crashed his car into a group of people walking on the pavement, and had then got out of his vehicle and entered a shopping mall.

Video circulating on social media appeared to show him chasing shoppers. Reuters has not independently verified the footage.

Police and firefighting officials said by telephone on Friday that 14 people had been hurt in the incident – nine stabbed and five hit by the car. Two were in a critical condition.

Earlier, Newsis news agency had reported one person had died, but the police official denied this.

At the scene on Friday morning, a worker was cleaning blood stains outside the mall.

Police Commissioner General Yoon Hee-keun warned South Koreans to be on guard for such attacks and urged officials to be vigilant and look out for copycat crimes.

(Reporting by Hyonhee Shin and Minwoo Park, Soo-hyang ChoiEditing by Andrwe Cawthorne, Ed Davies and Shri Navaratnam)