Tuesday, July 7, 2009
China will slap a curfew over the capital of China’s Muslim region of Xinjiang on Tuesday night after trying to break up protests with tear gas two days after bloody ethnic clashes killed 156 and wounded more than 1,000.
The curfew would run from 9:00 p.m. (2 p.m. British time) on Tuesday to 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday, Xinhua news agency quoted the region’s Communist Party boss as saying in a televised speech.
Hundreds of protesters from China’s predominant Han ethnic group, many clutching meat cleavers, metal pipes and wooden clubs, smashed shops owned by Uighurs, a Turkic largely Islamic people who share linguistic and cultural bonds with Central Asia.
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Some Han Chinese protesters shouted “attack Uighurs” as both sides hurled rocks at each other. Many were injured but there were no immediate reports of deaths. A fresh outburst of rock-throwing erupted in the early evening.
Police used tear gas to try to disperse the crowd, but for a while it only emboldened the demonstrators, caught between two sets of anti-riot police 600 metres (yards) apart.
Some used water to wash the gas out of their eyes as they pressed towards police at the mainly Uighur end of the street.
This article was posted: Tuesday, July 7, 2009 at 4:13 am