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China finds stronger terrorists in Iraq, Syria as security threat

July 29, 2014, 13:27 UTC+3 BEIJING
Terrorists in Iraq and Syria have set up a base where terrorists from Islamic countries, Europe, North America and China, had gathered, posing a threat to all countries in the world, an official says
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© EPA/MAYSUN

BEIJING, July 29. /ITAR-TASS/. China is alarmed over terrorists getting stronger in Syria and Iraq, particularly by extremists joining their ranks in China’s Xinjiang, a Chinese special envoy in the Middle East told reporters.

China finds this tendency as a threat to security, Wu Sike said.

“Terrorists in Iraq and Syria have set up a base where terrorists from Islamic countries, Europe, North America and China, had gathered, posing a major threat to all countries in the world. China is a country suffering from terrorist actions. Conflict settlement in Iraq and Syria will bring benefit to China and the whole world,” Chinese newspaper Huanqiu Shibao quoted the special envoy as saying on Tuesday.

Sike did not made public official reports about the number of militants coming from China’s Xinjiang-Uyghur Autonomous Region to fight for the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant extremist grouping led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Meanwhile, according to some foreign media reports, he said that Chinese citizens fighting for terrorists in the Middle East might number around one hundred, most of them are members of Eastern Turkestan terrorist organisations rampaging in Xinjiang.

Ringleaders of the Islamic movement of Eastern Turkestan and the Association of Solidarity with Eastern Turkestan calling for Xinjiang’s independence have sent members of these extremist groupings to Syria back in 2012, Huanqiu Shibao said in reports received from Chinese anti-terrorist structures.

China’s Xinjiang-Uygur Autonomous Region where Uyghur Muslims live together with Han Chinese is believed to be a volatile region. Terrorist acts have recently become more frequent in the region. Chinese authorities shoulder responsibility for them on members and accomplices of the Islamic Movement of Eastern Turkestan. This grouping is found to be blamed for staging disorder in the Chinese autonomous region in 2009. As many as 197 people were killed and more than 1.7 thousand were wounded in riots then. A bombing staged at a street marketplace near Zhenmin Park on May 22, 2014, became one of most outrageous terrorist acts in the Chinese autonomous area. The bombing claimed 39 lives, more than 90 were wounded in that bombing.

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