A TWO-year-old girl totters unknowingly into a Chinese street and is hit by a van, crushed under the front wheels.
She screams in agony and the driver pauses momentarily, before driving over her body again with the rear wheels.
What happens next is the stuff of nightmares – and has gripped the whole of China since it happened last Tuesday.
As tiny Yueyue lies broken, in agony, in the middle road, in the thriving industrial city of Foshan in Guangdong Province, she is IGNORED by no less than 18 people.
Unbelievably she is then run over by a van for a SECOND time.
The incident has left Yueyue critically ill in a military hospital in Guangzhou.
It has also left China wondering what has happened to its soul.
It is only the nineteenth passer-by, a 58-year-old street cleaner called Chen Xianmei, who drops her bag of rubbish and rushes to the bleeding child, attempting to scoop up her up, but finding her floppy and lifeless. The story of Yueyue was the leading item across China’s online news portals as the copies of the CCTV highly distressing footage attracted more than a million viewings in a number of hours.
The debate ranged around whether China's headlong rush to embrace capitalism had left it without a conscience. Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, was ablaze with traffic.
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One user claimed: “ This should shake the soul of every conscientious person in China.”
Yueyue’s father, a man surnamed Wang who was shown weeping with his wife on television news bulletins, said he didn’t want to enter the moral debate, only pray for his child’s survival. He said: “Yueyue is so lovely, often amuses us. Sometime if I quarrelled with her mother and if her mother cried, she would tell us not to cry, she always tried to amuse us. I don’t have any thoughts now, I just hope my child will wake up and call me Dad again.”
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