China Faces its Own ‘War on Terror’

DW6JPR

Victor Zhikai Gao is director of China National Association of International Studies. He was a former employee of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and served as English interpreter for Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping in the 1980s.

For CNNVictor Gao writes: For many decades, unlike their counterparts in many Western countries, Chinese police did not carry guns. Even the armed police in China, charged mainly with guarding foreign embassies, government buildings and important facilities, would normally only carry unloaded guns, keeping the bullets separate.

kunming-attack-luggage_main

A police officer firing a gun was a rarity, because China was a safe country.

Recently, however, a major shift is occurring that is significantly changing the landscape, as China faces its own “war on terror.”

With the war in Afghanistan winding down, there has been an intensification of terrorist attacks in China. Most bear the same tell-tale fingerprints. They originate from China’s Xinjiang Autonomous Region, which borders Afghanistan, and are perpetuated by extremists from China’s Uyghur minority, a mainly Turkic-speaking Muslim population.

China train station attack

They aim to indiscriminately kill innocent, unarmed people in public places, demonstrating a complete disregard for human life.

The deadly terror attack Thursday on Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang, was the just the latest in a spate of such attacks to strike China since a jeep plowed into a crowd in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square in October, killing five.

This week’s attack also involved vehicles — in this case SUVs that drove into crowds at an open market as its occupants tossed out explosives, leaving at least 39 dead and 90 injured, according to Chinese state media.

Other attacks have been carried out by knife-wielding mobs, such as the attack on Kunming train station in March that left 29 dead, according to state media.

An attack the following month on an Urumqi train station also involved a knife-wielding mob that swarmed the station after an explosion was detonated. Three people were killed, included two suspected attackers, and 79 injured, according to state media.

Days later, men with knives attacked travelers at a train station in Guangzhou, injuring six people, according to Chinese police…. (read more)

CNN.com

Editor’s note: Victor Zhikai Gao is director of China National Association of International Studies. He was a former employee of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and served as English interpreter for Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping in the 1980s. The opinions expressed are solely those of the author.


2 Comments on “China Faces its Own ‘War on Terror’”

  1. […] Pundit from another Planet Victor Zhikai Gao is director of China National Association of International Studies. He was a […]


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