China’s counter-terrorism measures in Xinjiang hailed

BEIJING, Jan 29 (INP): Foreign diplomatic envoys and journalists hailed the Chinese government’s efforts to counter terrorism in the XinjiangUyghur Autonomous Region.

After having a visit of the region, they recognized the significance of the region’s vocational education and training centers after they paid a visit.

The Silk Road Celebrity China Tour, which consisted of 12 media representatives from countries including Pakistan, Egypt, Turkey, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, visited Xinjiang earlier this month.

The trip was made following diplomatic envoys from 12 countries visiting Xinjiang last month at the invitation of the regional government.

Recording her impression about the visit,

Mumtaz Zahra Baloch Charge d’affaires, Pakistani Embassy in China said: I was part of a group of diplomats from 12 countries including ambassadors and charge d’affaires that visited XUAR (Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region). It was an amazing experience to visit this land of immense beauty, history and culture.

The visit reinforced her perceptions about this region that it has a multicultural and multi-ethnic identity, that it is critical for the development of the western regions of China and that it is an important node for regional connectivity under the Belt and Road initiative.

Baluch noted that China’s policy of development and poverty alleviation is focused not just on the richer cities but also on the poorer cities and counties.

The development efforts at the grass roots especially in southern Xinjiang are remarkable and are aimed at improving the living standards of the people there, she added.

Baluch added, she was particularly impressed with village-run factories and SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and the low-cost housing being developed for the villagers.

She expressed her confidence that with such focused strategies to improve access of people to education, housing, livelihood, healthcare and social security, Xinjiang will be able to meet its developmental targets.

They had the opportunity to visit the Xinjiang Islamic Institute, the bazaars, mosques, police stations, economic development and poverty alleviation projects and vocational education and training centers.

We were given full and open access to the three centers that we visited in Kashgar and Hotan.

The training program includes teaching of national common language (Chinese), law and constitution and vocational skills.

The students also participate in recreational activities like sports, music and dance. We witnessed several skill classes being offered in these centers, she added.

The imams we met at the mosques and the students and teachers at the Xinjiang Islamic Institute told us that they enjoy freedom in practicing Islam and that the Chinese government extends support for maintenance of mosques all over Xinjiang.

It was noted that there are over 30,000 mosques all over Xinjiang that form part of the religious life of the people there.

“ We learned that the recent measures have resulted in improvement of the security situation in Xinjiang and there have been no incidents of terrorism in recent months.

The counter-terrorism measures being taken are multidimensional and do not simply focus on law enforcement aspects. Education, poverty alleviation and development are key to the counter-terrorism strategy of the Chinese government, “she added.

INP/AK