China detains 10 Turks who may have helped terror suspects: Global Times

China detains 10 Turks who may have helped terror suspects: Global Times
This file picture taken on on May 23, 2014 shows fully armed Chinese paramilitary police patrol a street in Urumqi, the capital of farwest China's Muslim Uighur homeland of Xinjiang.

SHANGHAI - Police in Shanghai have arrested 10 Turkish nationals suspected of supplying fake passports to ethnic Uighurs from China's far-western region of Xinjiang who were described as terror suspects by state media.

Hundreds of people have been killed in resource-rich Xinjiang, strategically located on the borders of central Asia, in violence in the past two years between the Muslim Uighur people who call the region home and ethnic majority Han Chinese.

Another 11 people, including nine Xinjiang "terror suspects", were also detained in November while trying to leave China after paying 60,000 yuan for altered Turkish passports, the state-run Global Times newspaper reported.

The Chinese foreign ministry and the Turkish embassy in Beijing did not immediately respond to requests for information about the case.

The paper said terrorism-related audio and video materials were found among the suspects and that some had been bound for Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

In October, Malaysian authorities detained 155 Uighurs in Kuala Lumpur who were carrying Turkish passports suspected to be fake.

Separately, authorities in Xinjiang announced that people buying fireworks for Chinese New Year would have to register using their ID cards, the China Daily reported late on Tuesday.

The move was meant to prevent terrorists from obtaining raw materials to make explosives, it quoted Li Jianghui, an official with Xinjiang's work safety department, as saying.

Fireworks shops must record the variety and number of products bought by each customer, he said.

Islamist militants from Xinjiang have been blamed by the government for attacks elsewhere in China, including Beijing.

A group of "mobsters" on Monday tried to set of an explosive device in a business district of Xinjiang, prompting police to shoot dead six of them, the local government said.

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