Chinese Man Detonates Homemade Bomb at Beijing Airport

A man in a wheelchair set off a home-made explosive at an arrival hall at Beijing International Airport today, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

The man, identified as a Chinese national, was the only person hurt in the explosion and is being treated for his injuries, Xinhua said. Police are investigating the incident that occurred at 6:24 p.m. local time Xinhua reported. It didn’t give a motive for the man’s actions.

Photographs on Xinhua’s website showed airport and medical staff in a smoke-filled area of the terminal. Police officers and other workers surrounded a person on the ground and an empty upturned wheelchair was nearby. There were no signs of fire or damage to the surrounding area.

Beijing’s airport said on its official microblog site that operations weren’t disrupted.

By 8 p.m., dozens of television film crews had arrived at the T3 building and workers were cleaning the floors and glass panels at the arrival hall. There was no smell of smoke or signs of damage and flights from New York, Tokyo and Hong Kong had landed since the incident.

Liu Tuanjie, 24, said he saw reports of the explosion on the Internet before he arrived at the airport. “I was little bit terrified, but I still need to catch my flight,” he said.

The terminal 3 building at Beijing’s international airport opened ahead of the 2008 Olympic Games in the Chinese capital. At the time of its opening, the terminal was the world’s biggest building, housing 1.3 million square meters (14 million square feet) of floor space, according to its designer, London-based architecture firm Foster & Partners.

(Updates with details of airport scene in fifth paragraph.)
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