China sentences three to death for Tiananmen Square attack
China sentenced three people to death on Monday for a deadly attack at Beijing`s Tiananmen Square last October, state television reported, an incident blamed by the government on Islamist militants.
Beijing: China sentenced three people to death on Monday for a deadly attack at Beijing`s Tiananmen Square last October, state television reported, an incident blamed by the government on Islamist militants.
Another attacker was given a life sentence, and four others received jail terms ranging from five to 20 years.
Five people were killed and 40 hurt when a car ploughed into a crowd at the northern edge of Tiananmen Square and burst into flames. Those killed included two bystanders and three people in the car.
Two of those sentenced, named in a state media report, appeared to have ethnic Uighur names. The western province of Xinjiang is the traditional home of the Turkic-speaking Uighurs, and China has blamed previous knife and bomb attacks on separatists who seek to establish an independent state there called East Turkestan.
China has been on edge since a suicide bombing last month killed 39 people at a market in Xinjiang`s capital of Urumqi.
Police in Xinjiang have arrested or tried dozens of suspects in recent weeks for spreading extremist propaganda, possessing banned weapons and other crimes.
Knife-wielding attackers in western China wounded four people in a crowded chess hall in the city of Hotan on Sunday, state broadcaster China Central Television (CCTV) said in a separate report on Monday. Two of the attackers died from serious injuries and a third was arrested.
The motive for Sunday`s attack was not immediately clear.
Rights activists and exile groups have charged that the government`s own repressive policies in Xinjiang have sowed the seeds of unrest, a claim Beijing denies.
In March, 29 people were stabbed to death at a train station in the southwestern city of Kunming.