World Bulletin / News Desk
Iran has slammed what it called a 'terrorist attack' in the Chinese province of East Turkestan (Xinjiang) on Wednesday, which triggered ethnic violence between Han Chinese and Uighur rioters, resulting in almost 100 deaths.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Marzieh Afkham, said Iran repudiates any act of extremism and violence, after Chinese authorities said a police station and a township in Yarkand (Shache County) was attacked, leaving dozens of Han Chinese and Uighurs injured or killed.
The violence erupted on Monday – the last day of the Muslim Holy month, Ramadan. East Turkestan is the native home of the ethnic Uighurs, which constitute around 45 percent of the population.
Analysts have said the ethnic group have been subject to religious, cultural and language restrictions, which have helped fuel demands for a separate state. The Chinese government imposed restrictions on the Uighur during Ramadan, banning government employees and children from fasting.
Human rights organizations and activists say such restrictions have sparked violence in the mineral and oil-rich province of East Turkestan for years.
"There are restrictions about who can say prayers at weddings, or restrictions about who can fast during Ramadan," Sophie Richardson, China director at Human Rights Watch, told the Anadolu Agency. "There are [even] restrictions on who can grow beards."
China denies such accusations and launched a yearlong "anti-terrorism" campaign in May which will be in effect until June 2015.
Last Mod: 01 Ağustos 2014, 15:34