An increasing number of Chinese citizens are illegally migrating through the country’s porous southwestern borders to take part in “jihad” abroad, reports said Wednesday.
Terming it as “jihadi migration’, Chinese state media said the migrants are influenced by the East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) and “ready to participate in ‘jihad’”.
Chinese authorities have frequently blamed the ETIM for inciting separatism and violence in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) in the country’s remote northwest.
Now, police have said that the ETIM is also active in other parts of China including the border areas of the southwestern part.
Police on Sunday shot dead two suspected migrants who attacked them in Pingxiang City in south China.
Quoting anonymous police sources, official news agency, Xinhua reported: “Violence in the name of “jihad” has emerged as a major threat along China’s southwestern border, prompting a crackdown on illegal immigration since last May”.
During the ongoing crackdown, police officers found that many of the suspected cells operated differently from the usual human smuggling rackets.
“Unlike human smuggling in general terms, such activities in southwestern regions carry obvious features of terrorism,” the report said.