Police have arrested a suspect in the stabbing of 10 passengers on a commuter train in Tokyo late on Friday, local media have reported.
Yusuke Tsushima, 36, was charged with one count of attempted murder for allegedly stabbing a 20-year-old female college student with a knife, causing serious injuries to her back and chest, reports Xinhua news agency.
The others suffered less severe injuries. So far, none of the 10 wounded has admitted to being acquainted with their attacker.
Tsushima has admitted to the assault, telling the police: “I have been wanting to kill happy-looking women for the past six years. Anyone would have been okay.”
He also said that he chose to commit a crime on a rapid express Odakyu Electric Railway train because passengers would find it hard to run away.
According to the police, he stabbed the woman and injured others in one car, then he tried but failed to start a fire with cooking oil in the next car.
One witness who was on the train, told NHK news that people suddenly started running towards him, fleeing from one car to another.
The train was brought to an emergency stop by the driver on hearing noises coming from inside the carriages.
As the train stopped, Tsushima escaped through a door of another car.
According to investigators, he jumped onto the tracks and fled. Train crew guided the passengers along the tracks to the nearest station.
Tsushima later walked into a convenience store and told staff that he was “the suspect in the incident reported by the news” and was tired of fleeing.
Police were called and took him in for questioning.
The Transport Ministry has asked all Tokyo railway companies to thoroughly check their surveillance equipment to ensure safety.
Violent crime is rare in Japan and tight security measures were in place in Tokyo as the Olympics were concluding.
Despite Japan being one of the safest countries in the world, there have been a number of knife attacks in recent years.
In 2015, a man set himself on fire on a shinkansen bullet train, resulting in himself and a female being killed and 26 other passengers injured.
In 2018, a man killed a passenger and injured two others in a knife attack on a bullet train.
In 2019, a man attacked a group of schoolchildren waiting for a bus in Kawasaki. Two people were killed and at least 18 were injured.