CHINESE police have arrested two drivers suspected of running over a toddler who died a week after she was struck on a busy market street in southern China and was ignored by passers-by.

The Beijing News and other outlets said police in the city of Foshan concluded their initial investigation and ordered the two men formally arrested.

It did not say what they were being charged with and calls to Foshan police were unanswered.

The death of two-year-old Wang Yue gained widespread coverage in the Chinese media and prompted soul-searching over declining morality and callousness toward the suffering of others.

The accident on October 13 was captured by security camera footage, leading to police identifying the vehicles.

For seven minutes after the first van struck the girl, 18 people walked or cycled by the bleeding toddler before a scrap picker scooped her up and took her to her mother.