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Jul 07

Recent riots in Urumqi have been attributed by the Chinese government to the instigation of Rebiya Kadeer and her World Uyghur Congress. This may distract from a potential public debate on ethnic policies that badly need reform.

Years ago, in a high school politics class, I heard our teacher tell us a story about a Han soldier in Tibet. When this soldier saw broken pieces of human body being exposed at mountaintop and pecked at by birds of prey, not knowing this is a part of the Tibeten “sky burial”, Continue reading »

Jul 07

Details And Time line of the Urumqi Riot

Written by: Charles Liu | Filed under:-guest-posts | Tags:, , ,
28 Comments » newest 2013-08-29 16:10:18

Details and time line of the incident as reported by China News Service:

Details of Urumqi violence: rioters kill Han people on sight

In the afternoon of 7/5, a crowd gathered in Xinjian’s capital Urumqi, attacking pedestrians, torching vehicles. They toppled street dividers, causing traffic to stop. Police have arrived to maintain order.

On 7/5, violent incidents involving vandalism, arson, murder occurred in the City of Urumqi. Up to now, 140 people have died, 816 injuries, 196 vehicles torched and vandalized, some store fronts and two buildings were torched. Police have arrested over 100 people suspected of assault, vandalism, robbery, and arson. Right now, Urumqi traffic and social order have returned to normal.

On 7/6 local authority reported the situation during a news conference. Preliminary investigation indicates this incident is premeditated. Separatist element headed by Kadeer’s “World Uygher Congress” has exploited the Guangdong Shaoguan incident to incite, organize, and coordinate these severe violent crimes in China.

On 6/26, a group brawl between Uygher and local workers occurred in Shaoguan, Guangdong. It is an ordinary public safety case being handled carefully. After the incident “World Uygher Congress” used it to denigrate China’s ethnic and religious policy, using it to foment unrest, create disturbance. Some inside China also started inciting on the Web.

Since the evening of 7/4, some netizens on QQ, forums and blogs, started calling for gathering on 7/5 5pm at Urumqi Square’s south gate, to coincide with “World Uygher Congress” demonstration overseas. Large amounts of text messages were sent to gather people towards Urumqi. “World Uygher Congress” leader Kadeer publicly announced that a large incident will occur in Urumqi, and asked people within China to observe and collect information pertaining to this incident.

As directed by outside, two hundred some people gathered at the Square at 6:20pm on 7/5, and was dispersed by the police. Around 5:40pm, around 300 people were on Renmin Road, South Gate area blocking traffic, was again dispersed by police. Around 8:18pm, people started vandalizing, tipping over street dividers, destroying three buses, the police again dispersed them. The incident escalated around 8:30pm, rioters started burning police cars along Jiefan Road South, Longchuan street, chasing and assaulting pedestrians. 700-800 people moved toward West Gate area from the Square, looting, burning, killing along the way. Initial investigation at 11:30pm shows, 3 people were killed, 26 injured, including 5 police, as the incident escalated for the worse.

In order to protect Urumqi’s social stability, local government and police headed towards People’s Square, South Gate, Tuanjie Street, stable district, Xinhua Road South areas according to law. At 10:00pm, rioting in the main streets and business districts were under control. But the rioters altered their course and split down multiple streets, acting out outside the patrolled area, in streets and alleys in the fringe of town. Han people were killed on sight, cars were trashed, torched. Local authority immediately adjusted tactic, organizing a mobile teams to rescue citizens and arrest rioters district by district.

Right now there are still people on-line inciting, plotting to create, expand this incident. Local authority is strengthening prevention and control, resolving to ensure societal stability, protecting citizen’s life and property.