World Bulletin / News Desk
A Chinese court sentenced three men to death and another to life in prison on Tuesday for attempting to hijack a plane in Uighur region in June, state media said.
Passengers and air crew subdued six people who tried to hijack a flight minutes after it took off from the remote desert city of Hotan, a heavily ethnic Uighur area.
Earlier, state media reports said two of the men died from injuries sustained on board the plane, but Uighur advocacy groups have questioned the government's account.
The men "confessed to their crimes" and were "guilty of organising, leading or participating in a terrorist group, hijacking the aircraft, and attempting to detonate explosives on the aircraft," the official Xinhua news agency said, citing the Intermediate People's Court in Hotan.
The court sentenced Musa Yvsup and Arxidikali Yimin to death for plotting and leading the hijacking, and Eyumer Yimin for his role in the incident. Alem Musa received a life sentence after pleading guilty "with a good attitude", Xinhua said.
Dilxat Raxit, spokesman for the exiled World Uyghur Congress, said the four men had been denied their choice of lawyers.
East Turkestan or Uighur region is home to the Muslim Uighur people who speak a Turkic language.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 11 Aralık 2012, 14:59