China slams `irresponsible` US report on terrorism

Days after the deadly knife and bomb attack in Xinjiang, China today slammed as "irresponsible" a US report criticising its lack of openness in dealing with terrorism and accused Washington of adopting double standards on the issue.

PTI| Updated: May 02, 2014, 17:20 PM IST

Beijing: Days after the deadly knife and bomb attack in Xinjiang, China today slammed as "irresponsible" a US report criticising its lack of openness in dealing with terrorism and accused Washington of adopting double standards on the issue.


Expressing dissatisfaction with the China-related content in the US country report on terrorism for 2013 that termed Beijing`s cooperation to contain terrorism as "marginal", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said China always attached great importance to international cooperation in the fight against terrorism.


"China is a victim of terrorism, and always firmly opposes terrorism in any form and terrorist acts conducted or backed by any person under any name," Qin said in a statement here.


"On anti-terrorism issue, to make irresponsible remarks towards other countries and pursue double standards will not help international cooperation on counter-terrorism," he said.


His rebuttal came in the backdrop of the April 30 attack by alleged Uygur Islamic militants at a railway station in Urumqi, provincial capital of Xinjiang, in which three people including two suicide bombers were killed and 79 others injured in what Beijing called a "terrorist attack".


On March 1, a group of militants from Xinjiang had carried out mass stabbings at a railway station in Kunming city in which 33 people were killed and 143 injured.


Xinjiang, bordering Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Afghanistan, has been restive for the past few years with the majority native Muslim Uygurs, a Turkic-speaking people, resentful of the growing settlements of Han Chinese from other provinces of China.


China is upset over the US report which stated that China`s cooperation in fighting terrorism "remained marginal" and that the Chinese government provided little evidence to prove terrorist involvement in incidents in Xinjiang.

The US report criticised Chinese authorities for releasing very little information about the previous terrorist attacks, specially last year`s reported attack at Beijing`s Tiananmen Square in which three militants from Xinjiang, tried to ram a vehicle with petrol cans into crowds of tourists.

The report said the incident lacked details and outside verification and that there was "no independent evidence" of the Chinese government`s assertion that the attack was directed by the East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM) which advocates independence for Xinjiang.

Chinese authorities labelled several incidents of violence involving members of the Uygur minority as acts of terrorism. In general, Chinese authorities did not provide detailed evidence of terrorist involvement, and restricted the ability of journalists and international observers to independently verify official media accounts," it said.


The report also noted that while China has held counter-terrorism exercises with states including Belarus, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia but cooperation with the US has "remained marginal, with little reciprocity in information exchanges".
Rejecting the US report, Qin said, "Terrorism is the common enemy of mankind, and the international community should make concerted efforts to fight against it," he said.
China will continue to conduct exchanges and cooperation with other countries based on the principle of mutual respect and equality, he said.