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China ramps up pressure on Japan over Kadeer visit
By Wang Linyan in Beijing and Cui Xiaohuo in Tokyo (China Daily)
Updated: 2009-07-30 07:25

China Wednesday renewed its opposition to Japan's accommodation of Rebiya Kadeer, the leader of the separatist World Uyghur Congress (WUC).

Deputy Foreign Minister Wu Dawei summoned Japan's ambassador to China, Yuji Miyamoto, and called upon the Japanese government to prevent Kadeer from engaging in anti-Chinese separatist activities while visiting the country, said the Foreign Ministry.

Kadeer is believed to be the mastermind behind the July 5 riot in Urumqi and responsible for a series of protests at Chinese embassies worldwide.

The riot in the capital of the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region left nearly 200 dead and 1,600 injured.

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Kadeer Wednesday denied any role in the riot and urged the United Nations to investigate the incident in what Beijing-based experts said was a move intended to distort the facts and push the blame on the government.

"I was not involved in the incident," AFP quoted Kadeer as saying at a press conference in Japan.

The 62-year-old said: "The responsibility lies with the authorities who changed what was a peaceful demonstration into a violent riot."

Kadeer met members of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party in Tokyo Wednesday despite the fact that the Japanese government said on Tuesday Kadeer's visit would not affect China-Japan relations because she would not meet government officials.

"We examined her visa application, approved it and issued the visa based on the usual procedure," AP quoted Japanese Foreign Ministry Press Secretary Kazuo Kodama as saying.

However, Chinese ambassador to Japan Cui Tiankai said on Monday that Kadeer's separatist activities in Japan will impact relations.

"Evidence showed the well-orchestrated riot was instigated and masterminded by the WUC led by Kadeer," he said.

The WUC called for massive bloodshed "at any cost" before the riot. On July 5, the WUC sent out a stream of messages via landlines and mobile phones and Kadeer herself reminded her family to stay safe in case anything should happen, Cui said.

Wednesday, fresh claims surfaced, alleging the WUC spread a fake video online to instigate the riot.

A netizen, believed to be a key member of the WUC in Germany, circulated the video claiming that "an Uygur girl was beaten to death" on an Uygur Internet group two days before the riot, Chinese authorities said Wednesday.

The video, showing a girl in red being beaten to death by a mob wielding stones, was in fact filmed in Mosul in Iraq and first broadcast by CNN in May 2007, Xinhua reported.

The netizen named "Mukadaisi" also used extreme words to encourage Uygur people to "fight back with violence".

Chinese netizens Wednesday criticized Kadeer's visit and called on the government to take a hard line.

"We should stand up for our point of view firmly," Web user "Jerry" wrote on China Daily's website.

Japanese media and the public there seemed largely disinterested in Kadeer's visit. One Japanese person called her the "god of plague", according to Chinese newspaper International Herald Leader.

Kadeer is on a global tour, seeking to win support for her separatist move, said analysts.

Liu Jiangyong, an Asian studies scholar at Tsinghua University, said: "She intends to pressure the government and sabotage China's peace and stability. Countries receiving Kadeer run the risk of affecting their ties with Beijing."

After Japan, Kadeer intends to travel to Melbourne next Wednesday and she is scheduled to address the National Press Club in Canberra on Aug 11, AP reported.

Turkey may be her destination after that, reported the International Herald Leader.