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Tourists, police among 38 hurt; square sealed for several hours
Five people were killed and 38 injured after a jeep crashed into a crowd of people and caught fire in front of the Tian'anmen Rostrum in downtown Beijing on Monday.
The driver of the jeep and two passengers were killed on the spot. Two tourists, a female Filipino and a male Chinese from Guangdong province, were also killed. The injured include Chinese tourists and police officers, as well as three Filipinos and one Japanese.
The jeep crashed into a guardrail on Jinshui Bridge over the moat of the Forbidden City before bursting into flames at 12:05 pm, according to municipal police and Beijing Emergency Medical Center. The fire was put out soon after.
Police began traffic control, and traffic returned to normal an hour later after all the injured were sent to hospital.
Tian'anmen East subway station was closed, and buses did not stop near the square until late afternoon.
The square was sealed off until about 3:30 pm, and tourists could not enter the Palace Museum.
Officials from the Ministry of Public Security and Beijing municipal government arrived at the scene after the incident to guide rescue efforts.
They called for all-out efforts to save the lives of the injured, a quick search for the cause of the incident and strong measures to guarantee the safety and stability of the capital.