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Kunming knife attack gang tried to leave China before attack: Report

Published on Mar 5, 2014 3:10 PM
 
Chinese armed police patrol the scene of the terror attack at the main train station in Kunming, Yunnan province, on March 2, 2014. The attackers acted in desperation after a failed attempt to leave the country and become jihadists overseas, a Chinese official was Wednesday quoted as saying. -- PHOTO: AFP

BEIJING (AFP) - Attackers who launched a brutal mass knifing at a Chinese train station acted in desperation after a failed attempt to leave the country and become jihadists overseas, a Chinese official was Wednesday quoted as saying.

Both Beijing and Washington have described Saturday's attack in Kunming that killed 29 people and injured 143 as terrorism. China blames separatists from its restive far-western region of Xinjiang, home to the mainly Muslim Uighur minority.

Mr Qin Guangrong, the Communist Party chief of Yunnan province, which includes Kunming, said the eight attackers travelled to his province and Guangdong, which borders Hong Kong, as they tried to leave the country, China Radio International said, in a report that was later deleted from its website.

"These eight individuals originally wanted to join jihad," Mr Qin was quoted as saying.

 
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