Sectarian violence in Kashgar, Xinjiang, China

Security forces have been mobilized in the western Xinjiang region to deal with sectarian violence that has left 14 people dead and 42 injured. Reports claim that ethnic Uighur assailants, a predominantly Muslim Turkic-speaking people, resent the influx of Han Chinese. Many Uighurs complain of discrimination in the job market where they claim that government efforts to boost development in Xinjiang have mainly benefited the Han majority. In one incident Uighur attackers tormed a restaurant in the city of Kashgar, killing the owner and a waiter, and then hacking four people to death on a nearby street.

Travellers to this region should be aware of on-going ethnic tension and exercise extreme caution. Public meetings and demonstrations should be avoided since they can become violent with no warning.

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