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China Orders Clampdown on Illegal Private Kindergartens Following Arson Attack
    2006-05-10 19:36:07      Xinhua

The Chinese authority has ordered a clampdown of illegal privately-run kindergartens after Monday's kindergarten arson in central China's Henan Province, according to the Ministry of Education.


The ministry has urged all schools and kindergartens in a circular to reinforce security measures, on-campus management and prevent strangers from entering.


The incident occurred at around 9 a.m. on Monday in a kindergarten, which was illegally run by local people in the village of Shiguan in Gongyi City.


Nineteen-year-old Bai Ningyang, who was caught on Tuesday, broke into a classroom where 21 children were having class, locked the door and set fire to the classroom with gasoline.


Two children, aged 5, died at the scene, and another one died in hospital. Fourteen others, including the teacher, suffered severe burns and nine of them are in a critical condition.


Security guards should be on high alert and on-campus patrolling should be intensified to prevent a reoccurrence of similar incidents, the circular said.


The ministry also suggested schools and kindergartens should cooperate with local public security departments and communities in the exchange of information and implementation of emergency plans. 


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