China tries to shrug off deadly attack – Yahoo! News
Blood was washed off the road. Debris was cleared away. And authorities said peace had been restored Tuesday in China’s restive Muslim region where 16 police were killed in an attack that may have been timed to overshadow Olympic celebrations.
But there were plenty of other signs suggesting all was not well in Kashgar, this ancient Silk Road city near the border with Pakistan at the opposite end of China from Beijing.and
Townspeople were reluctant to talk about Monday’s brazen assault. Police stepped up security checks and put schools, hospitals and government offices on heightened alert, state-run media and locals said. Slogans on billboards, walls and buildings urged people to create a more secure and harmonious society. 😯
(…) Kashgar is 2,200 miles west of Beijing, in the far western region of Xinjiang — a vast, rugged territory home to a Muslim minority called the Uighurs (WEE’-gurs). They have a long history of pushing for independence, and Chinese authorities have blamed a series of sporadic bombings, shootings and riots in recent years on Uighur extremist groups.
One such group, believed to be based in the remote tribal regions of Pakistan, released a video tape last month threatening to target the Olympics.
But many Uighur activists accuse Chinese officials of exaggerating the terrorism threat to justify a crackdown on the ethnic minority. They claim the clampdown has greatly intensified during the run-up to the Olympics, which start Friday.
Meanwhile, Chinese police has attacked two Japanese journalists who were trying to report on the “incident”:
Two Japanese journalists were detained and beaten by Chinese police as they covered an attack on policemen in the western province of Xinjiang, China, Kyodo English News reported today, citing the journalists’ employers.
Masami Kawakita, 38, a photographer from the Chunichi newspaper, and Shinji Katsuta, 37, a Nippon Television Network Corp. reporter, suffered light injuries, Kyodo said. The two were taken inside a hotel and beaten before being released two hours later, the report said.