CHINA> Regional
Traffic blockade remains in some streets of Urumqi
Updated: 2009-07-07 03:53

URUMQI: Riot-plagued Urumqi, capital of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, was slowly returning calm but traffic blockade remained in some streets Monday night after the riot on Sunday evening killed at least 156 people.

Police officers were seen wearing riot gear and standing guard in downtown areas. Police vehicles kept patrolling the blockaded streets including Xinhua South Road and Renmin Road Monday night.

Debris has been cleared from most of the roads, but few people were seen in major markets or buses.

Bus stations near the People's Square, where the riot started, were cancelled. Most shops in areas where the violence occurred remained closed as of Monday night.

Up to now 156 people have been confirmed dead and more than 800 were injured in the riot.

Rioters burned 261 motor vehicles, including 190 buses, at least 10 taxis and two police cars, said Liu Yaohua, the region's police chief.

Police have detained about 700 people in connection with the riot, including a dozen who were suspected of fanning the unrest. Police are still searching for about 90 other key suspects in the city. Liu said.