China lays first charges over Urumqi events killing hundreds of Uighurs

China announced the first charges to be laid in connection with killings of Uighurs during July 5 events.

China lays first charges over Urumqi events killing hundreds of Uighurs


World Bulletin / News Desk

China announced the first charges to be laid in connection with killings of Uighurs during July 5 events that shook the region that is home to Muslim Uighurs.

Twenty-one people had been charged with murder, arson, robbery and damaging property during ethnic riots that erupted in Urumqi, on July 5, Xinhua news agency said.

Of the eight "leading" suspects identified in the report, six appear to be Uighurs. Investigations continue, Reuters said.

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 197.

Rebiya Kadeer, a Uighur leader accused by China of inciting the violence, said the "shadow of communism" could fall on democratic Taiwan, China's neighbour and diplomatic rival, which refused her permission to visit.

"I am very concerned about the future of Taiwan," the exiled Kadeer said in a statement. "I fear that the shadow of communism may fall on the people of Taiwan.

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

China has claimed sovereignty over self-ruled Taiwan since 1949, when Mao Zedong's forces won the Chinese civil war and Chiang Kai-shek's KMT fled to the island. Beijing has threatened to use force, if necessary, to bring Taiwan under its rule.

East Turkistan was occupied by the communist China in 1949 and its name was changed in 1955. The communist China has been excersizing a colonial rule over the East Turkistan since then.

Many Uighurs resent Han Chinese rule, complaining they're marginalised economically and politically in their own land, while having to tolerate a rising influx of Han Chinese migrants.

Meanwhile, 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.

Last Mod: 26 Eylül 2009, 11:51
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