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Tuesday, 26 July 2016


Nineteen residents have been killed in a knife attack at a care centre for people with mental disabilities in Japan, officials say.

The early morning attack in Sagamihara, west of Tokyo, is the worst mass killing in the country since the end of World War Two.

Police arrested a male former employee, who went to a nearby police station and allegedly admitted to the killings.

He is reported to have said he wanted disabled people to disappear.

The 26-year-old was named in local media as Satoshi Uematsu.

The Tsukui Yamayuri Garden facility, where the attack happened, is set in extensive grounds with separate living quarters for men and women. It had about 160 residents at the time of the attack, according to local officials.

Reports say the attacker entered the facility at about 02:30 local time (17:30 GMT) and began stabbing people. Eight staff members were on duty at the time.

The victims were aged between 18 and 70, the Kyodo news agency said citing the Sagamihara City Fire Department. Another 25 people were injured, 20 seriously.
Image copyrightREUTERSImage captionOther residents were seriously injured in the attack

Image copyrightREUTERSImage captionPolice were called to the Tsukui Yamayuri Garden facility in Sagamihara

Television footage on Japanese channels showed many ambulances and police officers lined up outside the facility.

Mass killings are rare in Japan, which has extremely strict gun control laws. In 2008, a man drove a truck into a packed shopping district at Akihabara in Tokyo, before climbing out and randomly stabbing people. Seven people died.

That attack occurred on the same date that a man with a history of mental illness stabbed eight children to death at an Osaka primary school in 2001.

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