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115 terrorist cells eliminated in Xinjiang

2014-11-25 08:39 China Daily Web Editor: Si Huan

One-hundred fifteen terrorist cells were eliminated in the past six months in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, stopping most terrorist attacks before they could be undertaken, local media reported.

Xinjiang Daily reported the region's work since a yearlong crackdown on terrorism was launched on May 23. Authorities said the campaign, which will run through June, involved "extremely tough measures and extraordinary methods" after a bloody attack in Urumqi, the capital, left 39 people dead on May 22.

Xinjiang, the main anti-terrorism battlefield, is endangered by separatism, religious extremism and terrorism, the top issues undermining the region's stability, the report said.

So far, the region has dealt with 44 cases involving explosives instruction via the Internet, 294 cases related to the distribution of violent audiovisual materials and four cases relating to the spread of rumors. During the effort, 171 religious training sites were shut down, and 238 people who arranged training facilities were detained.

Governmental legal departments, together with the region's cultural, industrial and commercial departments, strengthened the monitoring of illegal publicity in an effort to cut the spread of religious extremism at its source, according to the report.

More than 18,000 documents, 2,600 discs and 777 storage devices related to religious extremism were seized.

The police intensified efforts to find the instigators and masterminds behind the scenes, the report said.

About 40 percent of the total 115 terror cells eliminated were found through the clues that authorities got during intensive inquests of detained suspects, officials with the regional anti-terrorism office said.

Meanwhile, the regional public security department hunted for fugitives nationwide. So far, 334 fugitives have been detained.

On May 24, the regional public security bureau, the high court and the procuratorate jointly issued a notice saying that Xinjiang's legal authorities will harshly punish those involved in terrorist activities and suggested that the criminals plead guilty.

As a result, 52 suspects and fugitives turned themselves in.

The courts in the region also went after individuals who share knowledge of explosives and who illegally cross the national border.

The legal departments followed the law while trying the suspects, the report said, addressing issues that arose during prosecution. For instance, the Tian'anmen attack case was sent back for a supplementary investigation in the prosecution period before it was tried in Urumqi in June.

Local residents' cooperation has contributed to the anti-terrorism work. In July, nearly 30,000 villagers joined in the capture of fugitives suspected of terrorism in Moyu, Hotan prefecture. The government of Xinjiang announced rewards of about 300 million yuan ($48.9 million) for all the participants.

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