UAVs used to locate suspects in Xinjiang anti-terrorism campaign

Source:Global Times Published: 2014-8-18 0:33:07

Unmanned aerial vehicles have been employed to aid anti-terrorism campaigns in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, China Space News reported Friday.

Personnel from the China Aerospace Science and Technology Cooperation (CASTC), who had been trained in operating unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), were sent to Xinjiang on July 31 at the request of the anti-terrorism command center in Xinjiang, after a fatal terrorist attack in Shache county on July 28, which left 37 civilians dead and 13 injured.

A technical support group equipped with UAVs and spare parts arrived in Ailixihu township, Shache county, on August 3.

Local special weapons and tactics (SWAT) officers were directed by the group at the scene to manipulate the UAVs to search for suspected terrorists in key regions including Ailixihu and Huangdi townships day and night.

The UAVs transmitted images in real time, providing clues to hunt for the suspects.

Police arrested 215, and another 18 suspects had surrendered by August 9.

The Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps also used UAVs to locate campsites in an anti-terror drill conducted on May 4, China Central Television reported.

The Public Security Department of Xinjiang cooperated with the CASTC to build up a satellite earth station equipped with a 6.2-meter-wide antenna on August 4 in a bid to facilitate smooth communications between the SWAT officers on the front line and the command center.

In order to enhance the  counter-terrorism investigation capabilities of the police, the Xinjiang government bought a number of unmanned aircraft systems from the center for unmanned aircraft systems research, a division of the CASTC, in 2013.

The unmanned aircraft systems integrate emergency responses, command and dispatch, and air-land communication systems.

UAVs were also used during the anti-terrorism drill conducted by the port inspection station of Zhanjiang, Guangdong Province, on Sunday, the Guangzhou-based Nanfang Daily reported.

The armed police employed UAVs to patrol the grounds and respond to emergencies as they provided a bird's-eye view of the port.

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