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  • » 07/20/2011, 00.00

    CHINA

    Beijing admits: at least 18 dead in Xinjiang



    Rise in number of "official" victims in yesterday’s clashes in Hotan between police and a group of ethnic Uyghur residents. However, the government continues to talk about "terrorism".
    Beijing (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Chinese government this morning made a u-turn on yesterday's clashes that rocked the northern province of Xinjiang and has admitted that the death toll is "at least 18", 14 "violent offenders", 2 police and officers 2 hostages. However, Beijing continues to define the fighting as "terrorism", while for the World Uighur Congress - the non-governmental organization that follows the situation of ethnic group, the once dominant majority in the province - it was a massacre orchestrated by the police.

    Chinese police opened fire on a group of Uyghur demonstrators who, in the desert town of Hotan, protested against the forced confiscation of their lands and indiscriminate arrests against members of the ethnic group, one of the most feared by Beijing. According to a report published today by the provincial government, however, "a group of terrorists armed with explosives and axes tried to set fire to the local police station."

    Clashes in the province are a regular occurrence, but yesterday was the worst last year. Beijing needs stability in the area, rich in raw materials and in order to obtain this has promoted a massive immigration of Han, the dominant ethnic group in the country. The Uyghurs, the region's Muslim Turkic-speaking indigenous constitute less than half the population, after decades of immigration from other areas of the People's Republic.

    Dilxat Raxit, spokesman for the Congress, complains: "China has strengthened repression and control over the population, and this has greatly worsened the situation. Beijing uses brute force to suppress any protest by Uyghurs, even the most peaceful. "
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    See also

    19/07/2011 CHINA
    Xinjiang, Chinese police kill dozens of Uyghurs
    According to authorities, a "terrorist group" set fire to police station in Hotan and was arrested. Different version of the World Uighur Congress, they "protesting against the forced requisitioning of land and indiscriminate arrests and were massacred."

    11/07/2008 CHINA
    Chinese activists to Bush and Sarkozy: Don't forget us at the Games
    An open letter to Bush and Sarkozy, asking that their participation at the opening ceremony of the Games not serve only to honour the Chinese leaders. Concrete gestures against violations of rights requested. Meanwhile, killings and arrests of Uyghurs and Tibetans continue.

    30/03/2006 CHINA
    Activists, lawyers denounce new vote rigging in Taishi

    Residents of the small village in Guangdong are pressing ahead with protests in their "struggle for democracy". Candidates defeated in local elections claim the polls were rigged. They are being defended by 30 of China's most famous lawyers.



    06/02/2006 China
    Clashes in rural Guangdong: the police stands by and watches

    Over 20 injured during a feud between two villages in  Guangdong. The inhabitants charge: "We have been warning the police and asking for intervention for weeks, but they do nothing". The incident shows that " Beijing is losing power in the country's rural hinterland".



    01/10/2009 TIBET – CHINA – INDIA
    Tibetans and Indians rally against 60 years of Chinese violence
    The heavy presence of China’s military in Tibet constitutes a threat to India’s sovereignty and economy. Beijing’s policies vis-à-vis minorities are “wrong and disastrous”.



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