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February 21, 2011

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Knifeman threat to stab himself during stand-off

A MAN was detained by police yesterday morning after he held a knife to his own neck on a city street and threatened to harm himself.

The man, surnamed Wang, dropped the weapon when he was surrounded by officers outside a Yangpu District restaurant. No one was injured in the incident, police said.

Wang, a former employee of the restaurant, had argued with the owner the previous night and was looking to settle the dispute, police said.

Witnesses said Wang was demanding his salary and identification card.

The stand-off began at about 9am in front of the Laoshengxing Suzhou Dumpling Restaurant at 309 Kailu Road near Baotou Road, said police. Wang was seen brandishing a 30-centimeter-long fruit knife and shouting outside the eatery.

However, the restaurant has been closed since January and no one came out. Wang, who is said to have mental health problems, then put his knife to his own neck and threatened to injure himself.

Police cordoned off the area, said a witness from a real estate agency next to the restaurant. "The man was shouting for his salary and wanted his identification card back," said a witness at the agency, also surnamed Wang.

Riot police and an ambulance rushed to the scene at about 9:30am and minutes later were joined by negotiators. Just after 10am, Wang was persuaded by negotiators to drop the knife.

The restaurant owner, surnamed Liang, claimed he and Wang had quarreled while drinking the previous night and that Wang was looking for revenge, according to yesterday.

Neighbors said the restaurant opened last October but has been closed since the Spring Festival

Investigations into the incident are continuing.


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