Nightly News   |  October 28, 2013

Speculation follows mysterious car crash in Tiananmen Square

At least 38 people were injured when a car plowed through barricades into Beijing’s Tiananmen Square and caught fire. Government sensors quickly deleted any pictures posted online after the crash. NBC’s Ian Williams reports.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> overseas, a dramatic day and a symbolic place. tiananmen square in beijing . at least five are dead and 38 injured after a fiery car crash . whether it was an accident or something else is in question. authorities didn't want our cameras rolling on it as we hear tonight from ian williams who was there.

>> reporter: it happened in the most sensitive place in china, beijing 's tiananmen square . the burning car came to a stop under the portrait of mao. we arrived soon after. the police locked down the area. they have closed the subway. they are extremely jittery. security is always tight at the square. notorious as the scene of the 1989 pro democracy protests and bloody government crackdown. when we tried to film the aftermath of the crash, police and plain clothes security officials surrounded us. and tried to stop us from shooting. we had seen them stop a passing bus and haul off two men they spotted taking pictures from the window. we were taken from the square, detained for half an hour as they photographed us and took our i.d.s before letting us go. officials worked to erase all signs of the krar. social media is alive with speculation that the crash was deliberate, some sort of protest. no information about who was in the car and no clue about a possible motive. ian williams , nbc news, beijing .