News / Asia

    China Says Terrorist Blast in Xinjiang Kills 31

    Police vehicles of the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team are seen after a blast occurred, on a road in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, May 22, 2014.
    Police vehicles of the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team are seen after a blast occurred, on a road in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, May 22, 2014.
    At least 31 people have been killed in an attack on a street market in the capital of China's restive region Xinjiang. Chinese state media say two cars plowed into a market street, running people over and throwing explosives against the crowd.   
     
    The attack occurred Thursday morning as many were buying vegetables and fruit at a roadside market in a largely Chinese neighborhood in the regional capital, Urumqi. At least 90 people were also wounded.
     
    Pictures posted online from witnesses showed chaotic scenes with bodies in the street and flames from the explosions.

    Chinese media said the attackers drove two cars, which crashed through a metal barricade and plowed into crowds of morning shoppers.

    A local resident who lives in a compound facing the market says she was woken from her sleep by loud sounds. When she went outside, she said many people were paralyzed with fear. Witnesses told her two cars drove back and forth down the lane tossing bombs as they did.
     
    Authorities have yet to provide any details about what happened to the assailants, but called the attack an act of terrorism. The bombings are the third major incident in China in recent months. Late last month, a bomb attack at Urumqi's train station left three people dead and 79 injured.
    The following is a timeline of recent violence blamed by Beijing on Xinjiang separatists or foreign-backed militants:
     
    - October 28: Three attackers ram a car into a group of people in Tiananmen Square; two tourists killed, 38 injured
     
    - March 1: Passengers at a train station in Yunnan province attacked by eight knife-wielding men; 29 killed, over 140 injured.
     
    - April 30: Two attackers set off explosives, slash passengers at Urumqi train station; one killed, 79 injured.
     
    - May 22: Two cars plow through busy market in Urumqi, set off explosives; 31 dead, over 90 injured.


    Despite a nationwide crackdown on terrorism and beefed up security at train stations in Xinjiang and across the country, the attacks continue.
     
    Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei.
     
    Hong Lei says the "Chinese government has the confidence and ability to combat terrorists." Hong says the terrorists are "swollen with arrogance and their schemes will not succeed."
     
    The western region of Xinjiang is home to many Uighur people, a largely Muslim minority ethnic group in China. The government has blamed at least two recent attacks, the one last month in Urumqi and a bloody knife attack in early March, on extremist Uighur terrorists.

    Xinjiang has long been the site of ethnic unrest and tensions between China's Han majority and its ethnic Uighur minorities.

    Uighurs frequently complain about the government's oppressive religious and cultural policies in the region. As Beijing has tightened its grip over the past year, carrying out what it says is a crackdown on terrorism, there has been an uptick in the number incidents of violence, which appears to be spreading beyond Xinjiang.

    The government says terrorists were behind an attack on Tiananmen Square late last year, and at train stations in Kunming and Urumqi more recently.

    China has blamed the train station attacks on a group called the Turkestan Islamic Party. The group has posted videos online praising the train station assault, and called on people in Xinjiang to take part in the holy war, or jihad, against the Chinese government.

    Rohan Gunaratna, who studies terrorism at Singapore's Nanyang Technological University believes TIP could be behind Thursday's attack as well.

    "There is no group that has the operational skill and the will to mount an attack of this scale in Xinjiang than the Turkestan Islamic Party," said Gunaratna.

    In response to the violence, Chinese authorities have been beefing up security in Xinjiang as well as in train stations and other transportation hubs of cities around China.

    Gunaratna says that physical and operational security will not be sufficient alone. China, he says, needs to strengthen its intelligence capabilities.

    "China needs to recruit more sources (in Xinjiang) and infiltrate the Turkestan Islamic Party, without that it will be difficult to develop high-quality, high-grade intelligence," said Gunaratna.

    Gunarata adds that as the U.S. draws down in Afghanistan, the terrorist threat to China is likely to grow. The Chinese Foreign Ministry has said that terrorist cells trained in Pakistan have organized acts of violence in Xinjiang with the intent of splitting the country.

    You May Like

    Hope Remains for Rio Olympic Games, Despite Woes

    Facing a host of problems, Rio prepares for holding the games but experts say some risks, like Zika, may not be as grave as initially thought

    IS Use of Social Media to Recruit, Radicalize Still a Top Threat to US

    Despite military gains against IS in Iraq and Syria, their internet propaganda still commands an audience; US officials see 'the most complex challenge that the federal government and industry face'

    ‘Time Is Now’ to Save Africa’s Animals From Poachers, Activist Says

    During Zimbabwe visit, African Wildlife Foundation President Kaddu Sebunya says poaching hurts Africa as slave trade once did

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: stevenssoelwin from: myanmar
    May 23, 2014 4:10 AM
    china must respect human right and democracy.if its wanna be a powerful and responsible country in the world.Chinese government must improve their human right and democracy.Otherwise the raise of china same as a nightmare start

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolatei
    X
    July 29, 2016 4:02 PM
    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolate

    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Tesla Opens Battery-Producing Gigafactory

    Two years after starting to produce electric cars, U.S. car maker Tesla Motors has opened the first part of its huge battery manufacturing plant, which will eventually cover more than a square kilometer. Situated close to Reno, Nevada, the so-called Gigafactory will eventually produce more lithium-ion batteries than were made worldwide in 2013. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Polio-affected Afghan Student Fulfilling Her Dreams in America

    Afghanistan is one of only two countries in the world where children still get infected by polio. The other is Pakistan. Mahbooba Akhtarzada who is from Afghanistan, was disabled by polio, but has managed to overcome the obstacles caused by this crippling disease. VOA's Zheela Nasari caught up with Akhtarzada and brings us this report narrated by Bronwyn Benito.
    Video

    Video Hillary Clinton Promises to Build a 'Better Tomorrow'

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton urged voters Thursday not to give in to the politics of fear. She vowed to unite the country and move it forward if elected in November. Clinton formally accepted the Democratic Party's nomination at its national convention in Philadelphia. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more.
    Video

    Video Trump Tones Down Praise for Russia

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is toning down his compliments for Russia and Vladimir Putin as such rhetoric got him in trouble recently. After calling on Russia to find 30.000 missing emails from rival Hillary Clinton, Trump told reporters he doesn't know Putin and never called him a great leader, just one who's better than President Barack Obama. Putin has welcomed Trump's overtures, but, as Zlatica Hoke reports, ordinary Russians say they are not putting much faith in Trump.
    Video

    Video Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Bus

    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Silicon Valley: More Than A Place, It's a Culture

    Silicon Valley is a technology powerhouse and a place that companies such as Google, Facebook and Apple call home. It is a region in northern California that stretches from San Francisco to San Jose. But, more than that, it's known for its startup culture. VOA's Elizabeth Lee went inside one company to find out what it's like to work in a startup.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora