China’s Xinjiang region has a lot of Muslims. They are known as Uighurs. China has suppressed these people. If some feel that the situation for Muslims in Kashmir and Palestine is bad, they probably haven’t even looked at Xinjiang. And why not! After all China is an abettor of Nuke proliferation and all that Pakistanis want in terms of arms is provided by China. So, if they were to utter any politically incorrect stuff aimed at their “time-tested friend”, then not only will they be left to fight for and with Uighurs against China.. but with NO SECURITY whatsoever against India and US!
So, Pakistan’s Islamic identity closes its eyes when it comes to China’s Muslims. They can be discriminated, subjugated, masacred and that’s all “Halal”.
Recently, there was a huge drama over the return of the Uighhurs released from Guantanamo. China didn’t accept the Muslims back even though US had said that they were harmless. Once tainted, a Muslim is of no use to Chinese. Even otherwise.
Now, there have been large scale clashes and violence in Xinjiang province and the death toll is 140. That’s the official number. For a Government that kills in Milliions and reports a few hundred, you can assume that the toll would have been MANY times over. Even its recent official contradictions reveal that pattern:
“Death toll in Xinjiang riot rises to 140, still climbing,” Xinhua reported in its latest dispatch, after initially saying only three had died.
What started this?
The official statement says the following:
“An initial investigation showed the violence was masterminded by the separatist World Uighur Congress led by Rebiya Kadeer,” the government said in a statement, according to Xinhua
The Uighurs meanwhile charge that Chinese security forces fired indiscriminately at them as they were doing a peaceful march. There was a heavy clamp down on the Muslims in Xinjiang:
Riot police and other security forces armed with machine guns and carrying shields were seen in Urumqi on Monday, preventing further protests, according to an AFP reporter here. Truckloads of German Shepherd police dogs were also brought into Urumqi and large swathes of the Muslim quarter of the city were sealed off, the reporter said.
The regular Chinese don’t seem to be very happy. They are expressing their anger online:
“Resolutely smash the splitist forces and terrorists!” wrote on person on sina.com.cn, underneath a news report showing pictures of palls of black smoke enveloping Urumqi.
Who were targeted?
To be fair, it seems that Uighurs may have targeted the normal population. Or at least that’s what the reports suggest.
Xinhua did not give the ethnic identity of the dead, or say if they were civilians or police, but admissions at the People’s Hospitals, one of the biggest in Urumqi, suggested Han Chinese were targeted.
Xinhua said the hospital received 291 people of whom 17 died later. Among them 233 were Han Chinese, 39 were Uighurs, while the rest were from other ethnic minorities.
Internet Clamp Down
Meanwhile the Chinese authorities have shut down internet in the Xinjiang region. The websites of the Urumqi city and Xinjiang regional governments were down as well. Twitter is unavailable in Beijing and Shanghai as its been blocked. Although Fanfou.com, a domestic competitor of Twitter, is still on.. but I am guessing its been heavily edited as the reports say that nothing came up in searches for “Urumqi,” “Xinjiang” and “Uighur”.