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Terrorist Attack During Olympics


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Chinese officials told the state-run media Sunday that they successfully thwarted two terrorist attacks, including one targeting the Summer Olympic Games.

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The Games are set to begin in China on August 8.

Officials blamed both attacks on separatists operating out of an autonomous region in northwest China.

According to one report in Xinhua, militants who were killed earlier this year in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region were planning an attack on the Games, set to begin on August 8.

I am bit disturbed this information

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I think this is the government using the Olympics as a way to crack down on Xinxiang

Well, that's what the Uighurs are saying as well (though, of course, they WOULD say that)

WASHINGTON, March 10, 2008 (AFP) - Exiled Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer Monday accused China of fabricating alleged plots against the Olympics, and even of scheming to carry out its own terror attacks, to blacken her community's name.

``It's completely untrue. All these allegations are falsified,'' the separatist figurehead, who joined her US-based husband in 2005 after six years in a Chinese jail, told AFP through an interpreter.

``The real goal of the Chinese government is to organize a terrorist attack so that it can increase its crackdown on the Uighur people,'' the 61-year-old head of the Uyghur American Association said.

Wang Lequan, Communist Party chief in the northwestern Xinjiang region, said Sunday that a January raid on ``terrorists,'' which resulted in the deaths of two militants and 15 arrests, had foiled a planned attack directed at the Games.

It was the second foiled attack linked to Muslim separatists in Xinjiang, home of the Uighur community, to be announced over the weekend.

Passengers attempted to crash a Chinese airliner on Friday that was flying to Beijing from Urumqi, Xinjiang's capital, a regional official said on Sunday.

The plane was diverted to the city of Lanzhou in Gansu province, where ``suspicious liquids'' were removed, the Civil Aviation Administration of China said.

``The plane was landed in Lanzhou and if there were Uighur separatists on board, the Chinese authorities would have paraded them immediately and punished them severely,'' Kadeer said.

``It is shameful of the Chinese government,'' added the Uighur leader, who is seeking talks at the White House and the US State Department about the apparent plots. US officials did not have any immediate comment about Kadeer's claims.

``I really hope that the international community will investigate this case and prove that it is not true,'' she said.

China says the independence-minded East Turkestan Islamic Movement, listed by the United Nations and the United States as a terrorist organization, is the most significant threat in Xinjiang.

Most of the population in Xinjiang, which borders Afghanistan and central Asia, are Muslim Turkic-speaking Uighurs, many of whom bridle at what they say has been 60 years of repressive communist Chinese rule.

Kadeer was jailed in 1999 for leaking ``state secrets'' to a US congressional delegation visiting Xinjiang. She was released in March 2005 and allowed into exile in the United States.

China has expressed anger about the Uighur leader's activities while in exile, and was incensed when US President George W. Bush met her in June on the margins of a conference of political dissidents in the Czech Republic.

``The talent of men and women like Rebiya is the greatest resource of their nations -- far more valuable than the weapons of their army or oil under the ground,'' Bush said before the meeting.

A millionaire businesswoman before her arrest, Kadeer has been touted as a possible recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Two of her sons, aged 32 and 30, remain imprisoned in China.

``The Uighur people are struggling for their freedom, but the Uighur people will never harm innocent people. Our hearts are kind,'' she said, accusing Beijing of waging ``genocide'' on her ethnic group.

``It seems that the Chinese government has one goal, which is to create this scenario of terrorism, and produce a terrorist action itself so that it can blame the Uighur people.''

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