Muscat: A child was killed in a mass stabbing that also left one other person dead and injured 16 other people in the Japanese city of Kawasaki, local authorities told state media.
Police said that one child and one man were killed, adding that the alleged attacker also died from self-inflicted wounds.
According to state broadcaster NHK, the attack occurred while a group of elementary school children were waiting to board a school bus in Kanagawa Prefecture.
Eyewitnesses quoted by NHK stated they saw a man who appeared to be his 50s approach the group with knives in both hands and started attacking them.
Authorities stated that 16 children, one man and one woman were taken to the hospital for their injuries. The injured included an 11-year-old girl and a 39-year-old man who later died from their wounds.
Police confirmed that two knives were found at the crime scene and that the incident was being investigated as a homicide.
The incident was condemned by Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who said: "It is a very painful incident and I feel a strong resentment that young children were affected.
I pray for the happiness of the deceased people and sincerely express my condolences to the bereaved.
"And I would like to express my condolences to the victims. We have to protect the safety of our children."
Abe added that he had instructed his ministers to take immediate measures that would ensure the safety of schoolchildren.
Japan has consistently had one of the lowest crime rates in the world, with murder and mass attacks extremely rare.