Stronger police force needed in Xinjiang to fight terrorism

Source:Global Times Published: 2013-11-18 23:48:03

Nine assailants were shot dead by police after they mounted an attack on a police station in Bachu county in China's western Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region on Saturday. Armed with knives and axes, a mob of nine people, killed two policemen and injured two other officers at the location which lies southwest of regional capital Urumqi.

In April, the same county had witnessed another terrorist strike that led to a number of casualties. Repeated violence there reflects the uphill task that the region's anti-terrorism and security systems face.

All Chinese people should salute to grass-roots policemen in Xinjiang because they work in a complicated environment. Although there are times when their work is not impeccable, they continue to strive to do better despite various challenges and that is enough to earn them people's respect.

Bachu county had yet to develop enough deterrence to terrorism and extremism that mobs there still dare to congregate and attack the police. The number of police personnel dispatched by the local government is not enough to guarantee that no violent attacks take place.

We hope that our government can invest more to strengthen the police force and police infrastructure in local areas across Xinjiang. There ought not to be a single police casualty when extremists mount violent raids. We need to build a strong space for opinion against terrorism but at the same time we must also work on building the image of security forces and their real striking capabilities.

In Xinjiang, security forces should carry out more preparatory drills to fight terrorists and encourage the general public to participate. Such a move is likely to increase people's sense of security and serve to protect the region's economy.

The ratio of the Uyghur ethnic group in Xinjiang's police force, including special police forces, should be increased. This will not only mobilize all ethnic groups in Xinjiang to fight terrorism but also help to break the rumor that violence originates from ethnic conflicts.

Police stations in some important areas of Xinjiang should be fortified to intimidate the mobs. Policemen should be given more rights so that they can take prompt decisions when fighting terrorists.

The crackdown on terrorism and extremism needs immediate arrangements but studying root causes is important too. Short-term measures need to be firm and decisive while patience will be required to find a permanent cure. The power of China's national strength should be able to defeat terrorism.

We hope that in the event of a future terrorist attack, the terrorists will be subdued at zero casualty to the police. The public will recognize the country's capability to fight terrorism and that feeling will also spread across Xinjiang's societies and have a larger impact. This is not an illusion.

Posted in: Observer, Terrorism comments

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