Wheelchair-Bound Chinese Man Ji Zhongxing Sets Off Homemade Bomb at Beijing Airport

| by Emily Smith
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A Chinese man in a wheelchair set off a homemade bomb at Beijing Airport on Saturday in an attempt to reap justice from the government.

According to former taxi driver Ji Zhongxing, he was brutally beaten and paralyzed by the government in 2005 and he attempted to protest by blowing himself up and injuring those around him. He was passing out fliers at the terminal when security attempted to stop him.

Ji warned civilians that he would detonate the bomb and told them to back away then fired the explosives.

While some local papers have suggested that Ji died in the explosion, Chinese state media said he had survived and was taken to a hospital. Some papers reported that Ji had injured an arm, which had to be amputated.

The state media also reported there were no injuries, no flights had been affected and order had been restored to the airport.

Terminal 3 was filled with smoke and crowds of people huddling on the ground  pictures of the event were uploaded to Weibo, the Chinese Twitter, which showed the aftermath.

Protests like Ji’s “are the ultimate acts by those at the bottom of society who are unable to find justice,” said Wu Qiang, a political scientist at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

Skyrocketing economic growth, limited local government accountability and a lack of public institutions have all led to social unrest in China, to which Qiang attributed Ji’s dissatisfaction.

Chinese authorities have agreed to reopen an investigation into Ji’s case, which he has petitioned the local government to do for eight years.

Sources: MSN, Bloomberg