A violent confrontation that broke out between two Chinese police officers recently went viral on social media.
According to a Feb. 8 notice issued by the police bureau of Zhanjiang city in southern China’s Guangdong province, a 40-year-old police officer surnamed Xu shot at his colleague surnamed Wu, 46, on Feb. 7 in Xuwen county. Afterward, Xu survived an attempted suicide. Both are currently in the hospital. It is unclear what is the condition of their injuries.
The notice also said that a joint team was sent to investigate the shooting.
The official statement did not provide the full names or titles of the two officers involved, nor the exact location where the attempted murder took place.
Chinese media outlets and netizens later revealed more details about the incident. The Epoch Times could not independently verify the information.
The shooter is reportedly Xu Tongxing, director of the Jiaowei police station in Xuwen county. According to media reports, Xu suddenly broke into an internal meeting for Chinese Communist Party (CCP) members on Feb. 7 afternoon and fired at his superior, Wu Zongbo, vice director of the Xuwen police bureau and member of the bureau’s party committee.
Dong Guangping, former Chinese policeman and human rights activist, said incidents of police officers getting into violent clashes are common.
“This is nothing new in China,” he said in an interview with The Epoch Times’ sister media NTD, on Feb. 9.
Those working within the CCP system often feel frustrated by the enormous power Party officials wield. “Your destiny, your future, your everything is under the control of your superior. You yourself are powerless. With guns in their hands, therefore, police may choose to solve problems by themselves,” he said.
He added that authorities are likely keen to “minimize the impact of this event” because they don’t want citizens to hear about the bad publicity.
Jiang Taigong, a China news commentator who runs a popular YouTube channel, said in a Feb. 8 video that the incident was an open demonstration of the shooter’s desire to kill his rival. The shooting, Jiang believed, suggests that infighting between grassroots officials in China is especially intense.