8 dead in Xinjiang terror attack

By Bai Tiantian and Yang Jingjie Source:Global Times Published: 2013-12-31 0:58:02

Eight terrorists were shot dead and another captured by police during a terrorist attack early Monday morning in Northwest China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, the Xinjiang government announced on its official website ts.cn.

The nine terrorists attacked a police station at around 6 am in Shache county in the Kashi  of Xinjiang. They wielded knives, threw explosives and set police cars on fire.

According to authorities,  the nine terrorists first gathered in August, watched terrorist videos together, and promoted religious extremism, before plotting the attack.

Foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang said the government will crack down on terrorist activities according to the law and called for international cooperation to battle terrorism.

"It demonstrates once again the anti-society and anti-human nature of the three forces, and they have caused serious damage to the nation, society and the people," Qin said at a  briefing in Beijing on Monday.

The three forces refer to ethnic separatism, religious extremism and terrorism.

"Kashi is an area under great religious influence, which makes it prone to the spread of extremist thought," Pan Zhiping, director of the Institute of Central Asia at the Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times.

At least 11 terrorist attacks took place in China this year, 10  in Xinjiang and one in Beijing.

On June 26, rioters with machetes attacked a local police station in Shanshan county, killing 24 people, of which 16 were ethnic Uyghurs and eight were Han, and leaving 21 others injured.

An official who preferred not to be named said Monday's attack was a typical terrorist act, as they targeted a police station and launched the attack early in the morning when police would not be on high alert.

 Pan said in recent years, the Internet has made the spread of extremist religious thought easy and convenient. Despite efforts from the government, it is difficult to eliminate such materials. These extremist thoughts are very dangerous as they promise believers paradise to instigate them into carrying out attacks, he said.

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