82 ‘terrorists’ targeting Olympics held so far: China

July 10th, 2008 - 4:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Urumqi (China), July 10 (Xinhua) China has said it has smashed five terror groups and detained 82 suspected militants in the Muslim-populated northwestern Xinjiang province for allegedly plotting to sabotage the Olympics Games. The police have busted five terror groups in Xinjiang’s ethnic Uygur region and made 82 arrests in the first half of the year, Chen Zhuangwei, head of the public security bureau, said wednesday at a conference on Olympic security in this provincial capital.

The police also destroyed 41 training bases of Islamic militants across the province between January and June, Chen said.

“During the period, the police cracked 16 cases of the Falun Gong cult, detained 25 suspects and destroyed seven illegal printing press of reactionary propaganda material for Falun Gong,” he said.

China banned the Falun Gong as an “evil cult” in 1999 and continues to imprison and harshly punish its followers.

The official also said 217 people have been arrested on various charges.

The announcement came a day after police shot dead in Urumqi five Muslims who allegedly wanted to launch a “holy war”.

Chen also urged the police force to intensify their fight against terrorism and said, “From now, all police officers must act urgently, get involved once more in Olympic security, to make sure huge and small incidents alike do not happen.”

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