China launches 'strike hard-punish' crackdown against Uighurs

Chinese forces have launched a "strike hard" security campaign in the Uighur region, vowing to "change the face" of the public security situation there.

China launches 'strike hard-punish' crackdown against Uighurs

Chinese forces have launched a "strike hard" security campaign in the Uighur region, vowing to wipe out "lawlessness" and "change the face" of the public security situation there.

"From the start of November, public security bodies in Xinjiang will ... start a thorough 'strike hard and punish' campaign to further consolidate the fruits of maintaining stability and eliminate security dangers," Communist Party mouthpiece the People's Daily said.

The capital Urumqi of Xinjiang, in a name China changed in 1955, has been rocked by ethnic violence twice this year, in which hundreds of Muslim Uighurs were killed.

Uighur demonstrators took the streets in Urumqi on July 5 to protest against Han Chineses' attacks on Uighurs workers at a factory in south China in June which left two Uighurs dead. Hans in Urumqi sought bloody revenge two days later.

World Uighur Congress said that near 800 Uigurs were killed during a week-violence after Han Chineses attacks and following intervention of China forces. The China governmnet put the death toll 200.

Security forces would "root out places where criminals breed, and change the face of the public security situation in these areas", the report said.

The term "strike hard" harkens back to the 1980s, when Chinese police forces launched campaign-like sweeps intended to catch what government says law-breakers. Pro-reform legal experts in China later criticised those campaigns for ignoring suspects' rights and setting targets for arrests that encouraged abuses.

East Turkistan has 8 million Uighurs and historical records show that the Uyghurs have a history of more than 4000 years.

East Turkistan was occupied by the communist China in 1949. The communist China has been excersizing a colonial rule over the East Turkistan since then. 

July police crackdown

Many Uighurs resent government restrictions on their religion and culture and a massive influx of Han Chinese settlers which have in some areas reduced them to a minority in their own land.

Chinese authorities have blamed the Xinjiang unrest on what they say "ethnic separatists", without providing any evidence.

But Uighurs say the violence was triggered when police cracked down on peaceful protests over a brawl in late June at a factory in southern China that state media said left two Uighurs dead.

Human rights groups accuse Beijing of using claims of "terrorism" as an excuse to crack down on peaceful pro-independence sentiment and expressions of Uighur identity.

Human Rights Watch said last month that they had documented at least 43 Uighurs, including children, who remain unaccounted for after earlier round-ups by security forces following the clashes.

The real number could be much higher, the New York-based group said.

The regional government's revival of the "strike hard" rhetoric appears to be another part of its effort to win back the support of Han Chinese residents of the region who claimed that Uighurs were not being punished.

China has sacked its top Communist Party authority in the region after demand of Han Chineses.

Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 04 Kasım 2009, 00:59
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