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Suspect in anti-Japanese beating hunted by police

By Wang Wei in Xi'an (Global Times)

08:35, September 25, 2012

Police in Xi'an, the capital city of Northwest China's Shaanxi Province, released on Monday the latest photos of a suspect who deliberately injured the driver of a Japanese car during the anti-Japanese protest on September 15. The police also announced a reward for information leading to his arrest, cnwest.com, a local news website in Xi'an reported on Tuesday.

"Police should catch the criminal as soon as possible. As we can say, catching the criminal in this case, is also a kind of patriotic behavior," Li Xiaolin, a teacher from the College of Journalism and Communication of Shaanxi Normal University told the Global Times, "Those criminals just try to cover their crimes by putting on the cloak of patriotism."

"The matter of patriotic protest has been distorted. Some people vented their personal spite by injuring other people. They should be investigated for criminal responsibility according to the law," Xu Peng, a reporter from xian.qq.com told the Global Times.

In contrast with the violence, some people stood up to protect victims. Li Zhao, a Xi'an resident, held a pasteboard written "Attacks on cars ahead, Japanese branded cars turn back" on the street. His behavior has won the praise and respect from the public.

"This sufficiently indicates that we are no longer crowds of bulls who are triggered by hormone. The red cloth of the bullfighter can never stir all the people at any time. Wish a stronger, milder and more irrational country rise in the storm," commented cnwest.com.

"People could parade and demonstrate in protest, but should never be allowed to commit beating, smashing or looting, which would cause injury and losses to other people. In this case, the car, though Japanese-branded, is also the legal property of its owner, which is protected by law, and the law will punish those who invade the rights of others," Su Yi, a student of the Japanese language in Xi'an told the Global Times.

"The release of the suspect's photos is indeed a positive response to the popular will. However, the police didn't manage to stop the criminal behavior while it was happening, which reveals their counter-measures are ineffective. Today's monitoring network system provides advantages for them to preserve order in the streets. If the police still treat the beating, smashing or looting with indifference or a negative attitude, they may as well give countenance or encouragement to it," The Beijing News commented.

"Civilians should be educated in expressing rational patriotism," Wang Zhenfeng, an education consultant who witnessed the protest near Bell Tower told the Global Times.

Li Jianli, the victim of the attack, was reported to have suffered a severe head injury, with a hole in his skull. After a cranial operation, he was out of danger and has been transferred to a general ward on September 18.

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