16 July:China has claimed to have busted 12 terrorist cells of overseas-based outfits this year in Kashgar in the restive Muslim-populated Xinjiang region.
The groups were "sub-branches" of terror organizations including the "Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement" and "Hizb-e Tahrir Organisation", Kashgar deputy Communist boss Huang Sanping said.
The UN listed the "East Turkistan Islamic Movement" as a terrorist group in 2002 with alleged links to Al Qaeda and China accuses militants in the Xinjiang region of working with terror groups for an independent state called East Turkistan.
Kashgar in western China borders five countries, including Tajikistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
"Kashgar was the site of riots in the early 1990s, but the evil forces have been steadily nipped in the bud since 2000," Huang was quoted as saying by state-run China Daily.
He said members of the groups were either "jobless drifters or ex-convicts".
China had last week said that five "terrorist groups" plotting attacks on the upcoming Beijing Olympics were busted and 82 "terrorists" suspected of involvement arrested in the first six months of the year, even as senior police officers have warned of "real terrorist threats" to the next month’s Olympic games.
Police also smashed 41 Islamic militant training bases from January to June, Chen Zhuangwei, head of Public Security Bureau in Urumqi, Xinjiang provincial capital, had said.
Xinjiang is home to Muslim, Turkic-speaking Uighurs and Beijing accuses militant Uighurs of working with Al Qaeda.
The World Uyghu Congress however denies it and accuses China of religious repression.
China had said earlier that it had foiled plots to crash a Beijing-bound passenger plane and to kidnap foreign tourists, journalists and athletes during Olympics.Courtesy DD NEWS