News / Asia

    China's Xinjiang Region Hit by More Attacks

    In this Friday, July 10, 2009 file photo, Muslim worshipers come out of a mosque after noon prayers in Kashgar in China's restive Xinjiang province, where new violence erupted on Sunday, July 31, 2011.
    In this Friday, July 10, 2009 file photo, Muslim worshipers come out of a mosque after noon prayers in Kashgar in China's restive Xinjiang province, where new violence erupted on Sunday, July 31, 2011.

    Chinese authorities say two attacks in the country's remote region of Xinjiang have left at least 19 people dead, including five attackers, and injured more than 40 others.

    Chinese officials say the two incidents, which occurred late Saturday evening and then again on Sunday afternoon in the city of Kashgar, were both terrorist attacks. Authorities also said that at least one of the leaders of Sunday’s attack received terrorist training in Pakistan.

    Bomb blasts

    Chinese state media say the spree of violence in Xinjiang began when two bombs shook the streets of Kashgar. Authorities say an hour after the blasts on a nearby street, two attackers hijacked a truck, killed its driver, and then drove it into a crowd of pedestrians. Chinese media reported the attackers then got out of the truck and began stabbing people who were passing by.

    The Kashgar city government says eight bystanders were killed in the violence, one attacker was killed and another was apprehended.

    On Sunday afternoon, authorities said a bigger group of men carried out the second attack, stabbing the owner of a restaurant and a waiter and then setting it on fire. The attackers then ran out of the restaurant and began stabbing bystanders randomly, killing four and wounding 15 others. Chinese media reported four of the attackers were shot dead after leaving the restaurant and another died later at the hospital.

    Uighurs accused

    The Kashgar city government issued an arrest warrant for two of the attackers, who escaped, and offered a reward of more than $15,000 for any information that leads to their capture. Both are members of Xinjiang's Uighur minority group.

    The city government identified the two as 29-year old Memtieli Tiliwaldi and 34-year old Turson Hasan.

    The Kashgar city government says that based on a confession from one of the alleged attackers, at least one of the group's leaders who participated in Sunday's attack received firearms and explosives training in Pakistan and then later returned to Xinjiang.

    The statement says the leader received training from a Pakistan-based camp of the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, a banned organization that seeks independence for Xinjiang. A spokesman with the Kashgar city government could not be reached for comment.

    Ethnic tensions

    Xinjiang is home to millions of Muslim Uighurs, who are angry about what they say has been decades of repressive rule by Beijing and the unwanted immigration of China's dominant Han ethnic group.

    Dilxat Raxit, the spokesman for the World Uighur Congress, questioned China's account of the events and says the lack of legitimate means to voice grievances in the region may drive some to violence.

    There there is no way for Uighurs to protest through peaceful means, he said, and that Beijing has to acknowledge its responsibility in what has happened in the area. From what he has heard, people in Kashgar have been forbidden from leaving their homes and authorities have detained more than 100 people, Raxit said.

    Growing unrest

    The two attacks wrap up what has been a violent month for Xinjiang.

    Less than two weeks before the attacks in Kashgar, a group of 14 men allegedly stormed a police station. According to government accounts of the incident, 18 people were killed after the men took hostages. Fourteen of those who died were the attackers. Four remain in custody and authorities have released no additional information - such as their names or what might have possibly brought on the attack.

    During that attack Chinese terrorism analysts suggested that links to terrorist groups in Pakistan could have been a factor. World Uighur Congress spokesman Raxit says that the Chinese government always tries to link such incidents to terrorism.

    The Chinese government uses repressive measures against demonstrations, he said, and tries to avoid responsibility by linking every act of protest to terrorist organizations.

    China denies the claims of the World Uighur Congress and in turn has accused the group of masterminding a riot in Urumqi in 2009, that left nearly 200 people dead.

    Most of the casualties were members of China's Han ethnic group.

    You May Like

    Russian-Backed Offensive in Syria Pushes War to Tipping Point

    As threat to Aleppo and rebel forces grows, US plan to negotiate becomes less and less appealing for Syrian government, says one military analyst

    IS Runs Timber Smuggling Business in Afghanistan, Officials Say

    Government turning blind eye to smuggling, according to tribal leaders; Afghanistan's forest cover dropped by 50 percent in three decades, experts say

    Video White House Seeks $1.8 Billion to Combat Zika

    Obama administration says funding would 'support essential strategies to combat the virus' such as rapidly expanding mosquito control programs, accelerating vaccine research

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenyai
    X
    February 08, 2016 4:30 PM
    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video New Hampshire Voters Are Independent, Mindful of History

    Once every four years, the northeastern state of New Hampshire becomes the center of the U.S. political universe with its first-in-the-nation presidential primary. What's unusual about New Hampshire is how seriously the voters take their role and the responsibility of being among the first to weigh in on the candidates.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Bhutanese Refugees in New Hampshire Closely Watching Primary Election

    They fled their country and lived in refugee camps in neighboring Nepal for decades before being resettled in the northeastern U.S. state of New Hampshire -- now the focus of the U.S. presidential contest. VOA correspondent Aru Pande spoke with members of the Bhutanese community, including new American citizens, about the campaign and the strong anti-immigrant rhetoric of some of the candidates.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video Sanders, Clinton Battle for Young Democratic Vote

    Despite a narrow loss to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in last week's Iowa Democratic caucuses, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders secured more than 80 percent of the vote among those between the ages of 18 and 29. VOA correspondent Aru Pande talks to Democrats in New Hampshire about who they are leaning towards and why in this week's primary.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.