China announces USD 16000 reward for info on Xinjiang attack

China has offered a USD 16000 reward for leads relating to the recent deadly bomb and knife attack at a railway station in Urumqi, the capital of Muslim-majority Xinjiang province.

Beijing: China has offered a USD 16000 reward for leads relating to the recent deadly bomb and knife attack at a railway station in Urumqi, the capital of Muslim-majority Xinjiang province, and issued a look out notice for 10 family members of an alleged suicide bomber killed in the incident.

Police issued the notice yesterday offering a reward of up to 100,000 yuan (USD 16000) for information on the attack in which three people including two suicide bombers were killed and 79 others injured in the "terrorist attack".

It urged all units to conduct a "thorough investigations" for more information about one of the suspects, who is yet to be identified.

The attack, a major security breach, coincided with the first-ever visit of President Xi Jinping to the troubled region. Knife-wielding mobs slashed people at the exit of the South Railway Station of Urumqi and set off explosives.

One of the two suspects killed at the scene was identified as Sedirdin Sawut, 39, from Aksu in south Xinjiang and was said to have been influenced by "extreme religious thoughts".

The resource-rich province borders Pakistan-occupied- Kashmir and Afghanistan. It has been restive for several years because of ethnic conflict between native Muslim Uygurs and Han Chienese settlers.

Local police, in another notice, asked authorities to look for the 10 family members and other relatives of the alleged assailant.

They included his 69-year-old father, 77-year-old father-in-law, his wife, brothers and cousins, who are aged between 22 and 77.

"All units should deploy all resources to track them down. Once they are found, they should be detained immediately," said the notice.

Raffaello Pantucci, a senior research fellow with the London-based Royal United Services Institute, said the assailants were demonstrating their frustration directly towards the top leadership, and that the attack reflected weaknesses in intelligence-gathering about smaller scale and sporadic attacks.

"I think for a failure like this, the leaders will be embarrassed and they will want to do something to remedy that," he told Hong Kong-based South?China Morning Post.

A heavy security clampdown is expected in the region. Checks on guests at hotels, Internet cafes and public baths are to be stepped up,the daily reported.
"Anyone who has missed important clues because of a dereliction of duty will be pursued," said one of the police orders.
Xi has urged "decisive action" against violent terrorist attacks after the blast, saying the battle to combat terrorism could not allow "even a moment of slackness." 

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