A Chinese man has died after being shot by a hunter who apparently mistook him for a hare, police say.
Four men have been arrested over the death of Wang Moujin, who drowned in a ditch after being shot in the head with an air gun.
The incident took place last Friday evening when the four went hunting in Shaxi Town, Jiangxi province.
Incidents involving firearms are rare in China.
Police from Xinzhou district said one of the men had opened fire after seeing movement in the grass beside the ditch, where Mr Wang was reported to have been fishing.
Authorities were then called to the scene and arrested the four men, some of whom are thought to be in their 30s. Investigations are ongoing.
An autopsy determined that Mr Wang had died by drowning.
China has some of the strictest gun laws in the world, which can even apply to replica or toy guns.
The incident has been widely discussed on Chinese social media. “How’s it possible that people in this country have guns?” said one commenter on Weibo.
“I thought this was some US news,” said another.
While hunting permits are issued, ownership of guns in China is largely restricted to the military, law enforcement and security personnel.
Nevertheless Xinzhou police said in a statement that they intend to crack down on crimes involving guns and explosives. China is currently in the midst of a three-year nationwide campaign against such crimes.
An air gun fires pellets using compressed air and is typically used for target shooting. Chinese hares, which are native to provinces like Jiangxi, are a common food source.
Source : BBC News