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China claims embassy protests show Xinjiang riots organised

af.reuters.com

China claims embassy protests show Xinjiang riots organised

BEIJING-july 13- Demonstrations against Chinese consulates in Europe and the United States show that ethnic riots in Urumqi were orchestrated, China’s state-run Xinhua news agency said Monday.

Demonstrators threw eggs, Molotov cocktails and stones at several Chinese embassies and consulates, including in Ankara, Oslo, Munich and the Netherlands, Xinhua said, after reports of rioting in Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang province.

“Supporters of the East Turkestan separatists started well-orchestrated and sometimes violent attacks on Chinese embassies and consulates in several countries soon after the riots occurred last Sunday,” Xinhua said.

“The attacks against China’s diplomatic missions and the Urumqi riots seemed to be well-organised.”

Uighurs attacked Han Chinese in Urumqi on July 5 after police tried to break up a protest against fatal attacks on Uighur workers at a factory in south China. Han Chinese in Urumqi launched revenge attacks later in the week.

The official death toll now stands at 184, of which 137 were Han Chinese, who form the majority of China’s 1.3 billion population, and 46 were Uighur, a Muslim people native to Xinjiang and culturally tied to Central Asia and Turkey.

China blamed Rebiya Kadeer, an exiled Uighur businesswoman, for instigating the unrest.

Xinhua also blamed the World Uighur Congress, an umbrella group for organizations of exiled or overseas Uighurs, for the demonstrations at the embassies.

Deadly riots in Lhasa in March 2008, and a subsequent Chinese crackdown across the Tibetan plateau, also spurred a series of demonstrations at Chinese embassies in countries with a significant exile Tibetan population.

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China denies India envoy mistreated in Yiwu court row

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 China has denied that an Indian diplomat was mistreated during an angry court hearing in the city of Yiwu.Delhi complained after S Balachandran was reportedly denied medication when trying to secure the release of two Indians held hostage by local traders for allegedly failing to pay debts.China said media reports were “not factually accurate”.Indian media report that the two Indians are now being moved from a hotel in Yiwu to Shanghai.The two Indians had earlier told Indian television they were being treated “like animals”.On Tuesday, India warned its businessmen they were not safe to trade in Yiwu.

‘Ruled by laws’

At a press briefing China’s foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said: “Relevant media reports that the Indian consular official from Shanghai was forbidden from eating or taking his medication while in Yiwu and was surrounded and attacked do not accord with the facts.

“China is a country ruled by laws, which pays great attention to relations with India,” he said.

However, Mr Hong gave no specific account of what China believed had happened.

He said the two Indians had been put under police protection in a hotel and that five people had been arrested for “illegal detention”.

“China hopes that India treats this matter objectively and fairly,” he said.

China’s ambassador to India, Zhang Yan, met foreign affairs officials in Delhi on Wednesday and assured them that “serious attention” was being given to the plight of the two traders.

Later India’s NDTV channel quoted External Affairs Minister SM Krishna as saying the pair were being escorted by Indian consulate officials to Shanghai.

The businessmen, Deepak Raheja and Shyamsunder Agrawal, had pleaded for help in an earlier interview with NDTV.

Mr Agrawal said: “Please save us… get together and help us. They have stripped us, thrown things at us, beaten us, tortured us. We are being treated worse than animals.”

Their hotel had reportedly been surrounded by a large crowd of locals.

The pair had been held hostage by local traders for two weeks for non-payment of dues by their company, whose owner has allegedly fled the country.

On Tuesday, an advisory on India’s Beijing embassy website said businessmen could be “mistreated” in Yiwu and had “no guarantee of legal remedies”.

The strongly worded statement on the embassy website said that “Indian businessmen are cautioned to stay away from Yiwu”.

It added: “In case of disputes arising, experience suggests that there is inadequate protection for safety of persons.”

Delhi believes Mr Balachandran was denied medicine and collapsed in the courtroom in Yiwu on 31 December.

Mr Balachandran is a diabetic. He was taken to hospital in a semi-conscious state and later transferred to Shanghai, where he has improved.

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