China says foiled Xinjiang 'terrorist attacks' | world | Hindustan Times
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China says foiled Xinjiang 'terrorist attacks'

world Updated: Aug 03, 2009 19:14 IST
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Chinese police and security agencies have thwarted five "organised terrorist attacks" in the northwest region of Xinjiang, state media said on Monday.

Citing Chinese anti-terrorism sources, Xinhua news agency said the planned attacks on civilians were uncovered in the regional capital Urumqi and the towns of Kashgar, Aksu and Ili.

Urumqi was last month hit by China's worst ethnic violence in decades which left 197 dead.

Xinhua said East Turkestan separatists, who seek to break off part of Xinjiang as an independent homeland, had been plotting attacks since the July 5 unrest.

A group of suspects was captured but the number arrested was not given, Xinhua said. Quoting the unnamed sources, it said guns, knives, explosives and "materials advocating violence and terrorism" were also confiscated.

The brief report gave no further details of the alleged plots and their targets.

Uighurs say the July unrest was touched off when Urumqi security forces responded violently to peaceful protests over a brawl at a factory in southern China that state media said left two Uighurs dead.

However, the government says Uighurs, most of whom are Muslim, went on a rampage in Urumqi against members of China's dominant Han ethnic group.