Xinjiang to safeguard stability: officials

By Li Ruohan Source:Global Times Published: 2018/3/13 23:18:39

Region’s GDP topped 1 trillion yuan for first time last year

The great granddaughter of Uyghur patriot Kurban Tulum speaks during a panel discussion of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region delegation on the sidelines of the annual two sessions in Beijing on Tuesday. Photo: VCG

Senior officials from Northwest China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region vowed on Tuesday to sustain anti-separatism and counter-terrorism efforts to safeguard regional stability and provide a sound development environment.

"In 2017, Xinjiang made social stability its top priority. The combined efforts in the region have brought sustained stability and provided a sound basis for economic and social progress," said Shohrat Zakir, chairman of the Xinjiang regional government.

For the first time, the GDP of Xinjiang surpassed 1 trillion yuan ($158 billion), a 7.6 percent growth over 2016, Zakir said at a panel discussion on the sidelines of the annual session of the National People's Congress on Tuesday. 

Last year, the average annual income of urban residents in Xinjiang was 30,775 yuan, up 7.8 percent year-on-year and 11,045 yuan for rural residents, an 8 percent increase, the Xinhua News Agency reported in January.

 "There was no major violent or terrorist incident in Xinjiang last year," Zakir said. More than 100 million domestic and foreign trips were made to the region, a 32.4 percent increase over the previous year, he said.

The battle against separatism and terrorism is a long-term and complicated one, and could be very fierce in some cases, Zhu Hailun, deputy Party chief of Xinjiang, said at the meeting. 

He added the region's efforts to maintain social stability have been made "online and offline, domestically and overseas, in and out of Xinjiang." It also mobilized the public and enhanced border control, Zhu said.

Cyberspace officials in Xinjiang have made it routine to release cases of anti-separatist and counter-terrorism efforts online.

In January, it released 14 such cases. Among the cases, a 26-year-old Uyghur man was detained for storing and spreading photos promoting jihad and religious extremism. 

"The fight cannot be relaxed for even one second. Xinjiang people are confident that they can safeguard the stable and harmonious situation in the region and protect China's border," Zhu said.

The Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps will play a key role in building a militia to protect border region security, Sun Jinlong, Party chief and political commissar of the Corps, said at the meeting. 

The Corps will also proactively take part in local stability maintaining missions, Sun added. 

Xinjiang also listed major risk prevention, targeted poverty alleviation and pollution control as three major battlegrounds for long-term stability in 2018, Zakir said. 

The region vows to lift 454,800 people out of poverty in 2018, and also to "defend the red line of green development and ecological conservation," according to local officials. 

Zakir said that Xinjiang will open the region to tourists, and that tourism will also be a pillar industry in the region.

Southern Xinjiang will be an important region for tourism development, and the infrastructure is being built to facilitate local tourism, according to Zakir. 


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