Terrorism in China’s restive Xinjiang region is becoming more organized and moving beyond random attacks, Ming Pao Daily reported Friday, citing security experts.
The latest attack occurred on Thursday when two vehicles laden with explosives plowed into a morning market in the capital Urumqi, killing at least 31 people and wounding 94.
A preliminary investigation showed five suspects were dead but police are still trying to confirm if there were more people involved.
It was the second attack in the city in less than a month and followed an April 30 rampage that killed three people at a train station.
Terrorists are learning more sophisticated bomb-making techniques and receiving training from suspected al-Qaida militants, a Beijing analyst was quoted as saying.
Pan Zhiping, director of the Institute of Central Asia at the Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences, said the recent attacks were not isolated incidents and could have been directed by an organization.
Just two days before the attack, 39 people were sentenced by courts in Xinjiang to jail terms of up to 15 years for leading and participating in terrorist groups, inciting racial hatred and illegally making weapons.
On Thursday afternoon, two Juneyao Airlines flights from Shanghai were forced to make an emergency landing after receiving bomb threats, Apple Daily reported.
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