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News letter Issue No. 20

Issue No. 20

August 24, 2009

Truth of the “7·5” Riot in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region

On 5 July 2009, violent crimes involving beating, smashing, looting and arson took place in Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur Automous Region.

Eyewitnesses accounts, video recordings and criminal investigations brought together the development of this riot. On 26 June, a brawl broke out between workers from Xinjinag and local workers in a factory of Shaoguan, Guangdong Province. It was obviously an ordinary case of public orders, which was handled by local authority. This, however, was used by the so-called World Uyghur Congress (UWC), an overseas East Turkestan organization, to vilify China’s ethnic and religious policies in an attempt to creat publicity and stir up trouble.

On the evening of 4 July, some people inside China called for a gathering in places in Urumqi at 5pm the next day, via Internet and text messages. At about 6:20pm on 5 July, over 200 people gathered at the People’s Square and South Gate of Urumqi. One hour later, around 300 people began to block some roads of the city. At about 8:18pm, some people started beating, smashing and looting. Minutes later, some seven to eight hundred people flocked to Big West Gate and Small West Gate and contiuned their sabotage activities along the way. Rioters divided into groups and took diffenent directions, carrying out havoc in streets, alleys and areas connecting the urban and surburb districts. They tended to kill any Han people within sight, and smashed or set fire to shops and vehicles.

Under this grave situation, the local authority took necessary and resolute measures to protect people’s life and property and safeguard law and order.

Evidence shows that the riot was instigated and directed by the World Uyghur Congress. Rebiya Kadeer, the Chairwoman of the organization, was found having called her brother in Urumqi in the night of 4 July, American time, saying “a lot of things have happened, and we all know something might happen tomorrow night”. The UWC also incited its followers to “be braver” and to “do something big” through Internet and other channels. On 6 July, Kadeer held an emergency meeting with senior members of the UWC to hatch plans to further stir up demonstrations both inside and outside China. This scheme was immdeiately materialized in the attack on the Chinese Consulate General in Munich and Chinese Embassy in the Netherlands.

The riot inflicted severe human and property losses. More than 1700 people were injured and 197 killed including 156 innocent civilians, among which, 134 are Han Chinese, 11 are of Hui ethnicity, 10 are Uygurs, and one is from the Man ethhic group. The crime was widely condemned as against humanity. Chen Guangyuan, President of the Islamic Association of China slammed the riot harshly, saying it was a violent crime “against the basic doctrine of the Islam”.

Piercing through Rebiya Kadeer’s veil

Few has even heard of the name of Rebiya Kadeer before the notorious “7·5” riot in Urumqi, the capital city of Xinjiang Uyghur Automous Region. But the Chairwoman of the so-called World Uyghur Congress (UWC), who was evidenced to be the instigator of the riot, has leapt to international ‘fame’.

Kadeer tried very hard to deny her involvement with the riot. But facts mentioned above speak for themselves.

Since the riot, Kadeer has made international visits, written articles in western media and conducted interviews, attempting to ‘clear her name’ and place unjust accusations on the Chinese government. However, her remarks and accusations only served to disclose her true colour.

Kadeer repeatedly accused the Chinese government of depriving the Uyghurs of economic rights, and once quoted by AFP as saying the cause of the “7·5” riot was “six decades of Chinese rule, during which the Uyghurs have endured a litany of human rights abuses such as discrimination, religious repression and removing Uyghur language teaching”.

But her own past exposed the fallacies in her charge. The 62-year-old Kadeer, with an education background of only elementary school, leapt to be a millionairess within 10 years and become the richest woman in Xinjiang. People cannot help asking: if the Uyghur’s economic rights were denied as she claimed, how could she obtain such a massive fortune within a few years? If human rights of the Uyghurs were deprived, how could she enjoy the glory of being a member of the 8th National Committee of Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference? If rights of Uyghur language learning were rejected, how can she and her followers speak fluent Uyghur now?

Rebiya Kadeer has proved to be a person of constant self-contradiction. When released from jail in 2005 serving an unfinished eight-year term for tax evasion and criminal acts endangering state secrets, Kadeer promised that she would never involve in any deeds aiming at independence of Xinjiang. But she went back to her words as soon as she landed in the US. In late 2005, she became the Chairwoman of UWC, and since then, Kadeer has been an ironclad separatist colluding with terrorists and an masterminder unceasingly fanning unrest within and outside of China.

Knowing Rebiya extremly well, her family members blamed her for organizing the Urumqi riot, and asked her to apologize to the victims in two letters addressed to her on 3 August. Rebiya Kadeer may find it become more and more difficult to maintain her ‘peaceful image’ under her long used veil as clouds cleared gradually but solidly.

To know more about the riot in Urumqi on 5th July, the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region and China’s ethnic minorities, you may go to the following websites:



Foreign experts, officials praise China's ethnic policy. Some foreign experts, scholars and officials praised China's ethnic policies and voiced support for its efforts to defend its sovereignty and social stability in the wake of a deadly July 5 riot in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. For more details, please see: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2009-07/24/content_11767891.htm

Visiting diplomats appreciate well-protected culture in Xinjiang. A delegation of diplomatic envoys paid a four-day visit to the northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region from 11th to 14th August. The delegation included diplomats from Indonesia, Togo, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Syria, Turkey, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Sweden, Australia and the United States. Before they left, the diplomats expressed sympathy to victims of the July 5 riot in the region's capital city Urumqi, and their appreciation of Xinjiang' s development. They observed that the cultural relics and ethnic identities of Uygurs have been well preserved in Xinjiang. For more details, please check the reports below:



Western historian speaks out the Xinjiang facts. The French historian Alexandre Adler wrote in Le Figaro (page 23, print edition) on the 18th July, 2009 that when looking at the Xinjiang related issues one should not fall into a political trap. He pointed out that China’s administration over Xinjiang area could be dated back to the time when the Roman Empire ruled Europe, and there never existed a truly independent Uyghur state in history. As other minorities in China, Uyghur people enjoys many preferential policies such as exemption from the one-child policy and receiving education in ethnic Uyghur language, etc.

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