China: counter-terrorism top focus in E.Turkestan

Top political advisor says greater efforts needed to make E.Turkestan stand "firmly shoulder-to-shoulder" with Communist Party

China: counter-terrorism top focus in E.Turkestan

World Bulletin / News Desk

A Chinese political advisor has highlighted "counter-terrorism" as the main focus for the China-occupied East Turkestan.

Yu Zhengsheng has been on a tour of East Turkestan, where he attended a grand rally in East Turkestan's capital Urumqi for the region's 60th anniversary of autonomy. 

"All policies and programs related to economic development, people's livelihoods, reform, ethnic minorities and religion should contribute to the final goal," Yu said as quoted by China Daily on Friday.

"We must be fully aware of the severe situation we are facing to maintain long-term stability in East Turkestan," Yu added. "Counter-terrorism is the focus of our current work."

Yu underlined that since the 1990s, three forces -- "ethnic separatism, religious extremism, and violent terrorism" -- had been working from bases both inside and outside the country to plan and stage a series of incidents of "terror and violence... causing great loss to the lives and property of innocent civilians of all ethnic groups."

Yu, who is China's fourth-ranked Communist Party leader, said greater efforts will be made to raise morale and unite the people of East Turkestan, so they will stand "firmly shoulder-to-shoulder" with the party and government to build an "iron wall" that shields stability and security.

The Uighur -- who constitute around 45 percent of the population of East Turkestan -- have accused China of carrying out repressive policies that restrain their religious, commercial and cultural activities.

A state-sponsored white paper published last week highlighted that public security organs in East Turkestan are on high alert for signs of violent attacks and terrorism in the region, and should respond with a heavy crackdown.

Chinese state media reported in June that "Muslim terrorists" had orchestrated attacks on police stations and other symbols of the state in the region.

The paper underlined these as being a July 5 riot in Urumqi in 2009, which killed 197 and injured over 1,700, and a "terrorist" attack in Shache on July 28, 2014 which claimed 37 lives and injured 13.

While not naming any one particular group as responsible for the bombings, the paper underlined that 24,400 mosques with 28,600 clerical personnel exist in East Turkestan, and the central government has allocated over 10 million Yuan ($1.6 million) for maintaining or repairing a number of key mosques and religious sites since the 1980s.

By 2014, more than 1.76 million copies of religious classics, books, and magazines, including the Quran, had been published in Uighur and various other languages, it said.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 02 Ekim 2015, 11:06