More than 200 injured, shops set alight in Aba riot

Updated: 2008-04-03 17:20

More than 200 people were injured and 24 shops and 81 vehicles were set alight in the March 16 riot in the Aba Tibetan-Qiang Autonomous Prefecture of southwestern China, an official said Thursday.

Xiao Youcai, vice governor of the prefecture in Sichuan Province, told a press conference here that two police stations were also set on fire during the violence.

"The economic loss from the smashing, looting and arson amounts to more than 10 years of Aba county's fiscal revenue," he said.

Xiao said that following the unrest erupting in Lhasa on March 14, Aba county also witnessed criminal violence on March 16 led by monks in the Kirti Monastery.

The mob, some waving flags of the so-called "Tibetan government-in-exile", holding portraits of the Dalai Lama and shouting Tibetan independence slogans, committed assaults and vandalism, looting and arson on the main streets of the county, Xiao said.

With the support of local people of various ethnic groups, the situation was soon brought under control and social order restored, he said.

Xiao said that on March 28, ammunition was found in the Kirti Monastery in Aba county, which is under Aba prefecture. The weapons included 30 guns, 498 bullets, 4 kg of gun powder and 33 swords.

Pornographic discs were also discovered in the raid, he said.

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