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19 detained for spreading rumors in Xinjiang

Updated: 2013-07-01 01:23
By CUI JIA in Urumqi ( China Daily)

19 detained for spreading rumors in Xinjiang

Armed Police officers in Xinjiang rally against terrorism in Urumqi on Saturday, three days after a terrorist attack killed 24 people in the region. ZHONG CHENG / FOR CHINA DAILY 

Nineteen people in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region have been detained for making up and spreading rumors via text messages and the Internet, the region's public security bureau said on Sunday.

Police made the detentions after rumors were spread following unrest in the region.

Terrorists killed 24 people during an attack in Lukqun township, Turpan prefecture, on Wednesday. Two days later, a group of armed people gathered in Hotan county, Hotan prefecture, but no casualties were reported.

Spreading rumors can cause as much panic as the terror attacks themselves and lead people to pass on unverified information, police said.

The people detained in Xinjiang are accused of spreading rumors that unrest also occurred in Urumqi and southern Xinjiang and escaped criminals raped and killed passersby. They also said that suspects in the attack in Turpan were all wearing identical T-shirts with black stars and crescent patterns, and that HIVcontaminated blood was found in food.

A resident surnamed Tu from Changji, Changji Hui autonomous prefecture, was given 10 days administrative detention for creating speculation that riots occurred in the regional capital Urumqi and people were killed ahead of the fourth anniversary of the July 5 riot in the city, which left 197 dead.

Tu told police that he posted the information online around 11:30 pm on Friday because he was seeking an adventure.

On Thursday, an Urumqi resident said on a micro blog that a violent terror attack occurred in Kashgar and eight people died. A person from Aksu was also detained after releasing "reliable information" on Friday that a riot would happen that day and the next.


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