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China insists terrorism threat remains in Xinjiang province

CHINA has said that a terror threat continues in the country’s north-west Xinjiang Uighur autonomous region today, despite its success in reducing the number of attacks.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said that the region has maintained its “de-radicalisation policies” because the security threat remains.

The Chinese autonomous region suffered serious ethnic conflict which escalated between 1990 and 2016, during which time hundreds of civilians and security officials were killed in terror attacks.

But re-education programmes have been described  as “concentration camps” by some international observers.

However, claims of a genocide being waged against the Uighur people were dismissed as “lies” by Beijing.

“Even though Xinjiang has not recorded a single terrorist attack over the past four years, the region continues to face threats and challenges from terrorism and extremism,” Mr Zhao said.

“It is very necessary for Xinjiang to continue carrying out counter-terrorism and de-radicalisation works according to law,” he added.

Swedish clothing store H&M has been forced to close 20 stores in China after expressing concerns that forced labour was being used to produce cotton in Xinjiang.

A number of Chinese celebrities have severed ties with Western companies — including Nike, Adidas, Puma, Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein — over what they say are unfounded allegations against China.

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