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Xinjiang starts campaign against terror
A one-year campaign against terrorist violence in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region got underway on Friday, local authorities said.
The region saw its bloodiest day in five years on Thursday when 39 people were killed and 94 injured in a terrorist attack.
With approval from the central government and according to decisions from the national anti-terrorism leading group, the campaign will last until June 2015 with Xinjiang as the major battleground, according to a televised conference by the regional government.
Frequent recent terrorist violence is the most obvious and real threat to the stability of Xinjiang. Xinjiang will adopt special measures and use special means to end the violence and uproot the organization of the terrorists, according to the conference.
The campaign will make full use of political and legal forces, army and armed police in Xinjiang. It will focus on terrorists and religious extremist groups, gun and explosive manufacturing dens and terrorist training camps. Terrorists and extremists will be hunted down and punished.
Those involved in terrorism and extremism will be under strict control. The government will prevent terrorism and extremism from spreading to other regions.
At the launch of the campaign, Guo Shengkun, minister of public security and head of the national anti-terrorism leading group, said the attack on Thursday showed that anti-terrorism in Xinjiang is a long-term, complicated, and difficult job. He called for preemptive efforts to contain terror in Xinjiang and strengthen the people's sense of security.
Guo later checked on security in densely-populated places in Urumqi, and called for mobilizing the people to expose terrorists. He also visited a funeral parlor in Urumqi, laying a wreath for victims of the attack.
Xinjiang is a remote region with more than half of its population ethnic minorities who hold Muslim beliefs. Violence in the name of "jihad" has been increasing since 2009 and represents the biggest threat to the region. Some 190 terrorist attacks were recorded in Xinjiang in 2012, a significant increase from 2011, according to the regional public security department.
Recently, three people were killed and 79 injured in an attack on April 30 at a railway station in Urumqi. In March, assailants killed 29 civilians and injured another 143 at a railway station in the southwestern city of Kunming.
[Source: Xinhua, Urumqi, 23May14]
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