Xinjiang to intensify crackdown on separatists
Xinjiang will intensify its crackdown on the terrorist activities of separatist forces in the region, said Wang Lequan, Party secretary of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in Northwest China.
He made the remark yesterday at the sixth regional Party congress held in Urumqi.
The government will maintain a forceful stance in quelling any separatist activities, he said.
He stressed the importance of seizing the initiative and launching pre-emptive strikes against the core elements of separatists, religious radicals and terrorists.
The Chinese Government insists that separatists in Xinjiang, which borders Afghanistan, should be dealt with under the global anti-terrorism campaign.
The most serious recent incidents in Xinjiang came in 1997 with violent riots in the town of Yining and explosions in the region and Beijing, all conducted by separatists.
Wang emphasized the importance of the continuation of the crackdown in some areas to ensure the long-term stability and development of the region.
He also pledged to thoroughly implement the policies of the central government on religion and strengthen the governance of religious affairs within the legal framework.
The government will steadfastly combat separatist terrorism conducted by religious fanatics under the disguise of religion, but will support and safeguard all normal religious activities, Wang promised.
Meanwhile, more than 1,700 illegal weapons were destroyed in Xinjiang yesterday.
The operation was conducted by police from the Production and Construction Corps, a State farming organization originally set up by the army, according to China News Service. The arms were seized over the last five months, the report said.
More than 3,300 firearms, 45,000 bullets, over six tons of explosives, 50,000 sticks of dynamite and other weapons have been destroyed in the region since the beginning of the year.
"Motivated by economic interests, the proliferation of criminal activities such as the sale and possession of illegal weapons, ammunition and explosives has helped their distribution into society, causing numerous incidents," a statement from the farming group said.
China Daily news