Six men have been arrested in a famous tourist town in southwest China in connection with a horrific assault of two women late last year, local police said in an online statement on Wednesday.
The two young victims were visiting the ancient town of Lijiang, Yunnan province when they were attacked and tortured by a dozen local young men at a barbecue shop in November.
One of the victims released photos showing her badly swollen, bloodied face, blackened eyes and a long deep gash the length of her nose, requiring half a dozen stitches, on social media platform Sina Weibo on Tuesday.
The woman said in her post that the drunk men attacked them with beer bottles, before she was dragged out on the street and slashed across the face with a broken bottle as her attacker filmed the torture on their phones in public. She claimed that some if the men said they wanted to scar her face for life.
The men said they had “strong local connections”. No one intervened during the attack, and police were reluctant to investigate the case, the victim said.
The post spread quickly on mainland internet, prompting nationwide appeal for women’s safety.
The Lijiang Public Security Bureau said in its statement on Wednesday that a special task force had been set up after the post appeared, and that all six main suspects had been arrested.
The police confirmed the attack on the women tourists but said the victim suffered only a “slight injury”, according to their medical assessment conducted last week.
The police response prompted a further outcry on social media, with many Weibo users complaining that the gash on the victim’s face looked anything but mild.