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China detains prominent Uighur academic, say reports

Published on Jan 16, 2014 11:47 AM

BEIJING (AFP) - Police in China have detained a prominent Uighur academic and outspoken critic of government policy towards the mostly Muslim minority, a report and a friend of his said.

Mr Ilham Tohti was held by a group of police on Wednesday along with his mother, his wife said according to a report late Wednesday on Uighurbiz, a website he set up.

Mr Tohti, 45, is an economist at a university in Beijing and has been a critic of China's policies towards Uighurs, who are concentrated in the far western region of Xinjiang, which is regularly hit by unrest.

Police did not carry out "any legal procedures," while forcibly detaining Mr Tohti, the website said according to a cached version.

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