Thursday, May 28, 2015Thursday, May 28, 2015

China offers cash in Xinjiang for tips on beards

Published on Apr 25, 2014 3:21 PM

BEIJING (AFP) - Authorities in China's restive Xinjiang region are offering cash to informants who report on neighbours with excessive facial hair, state media has reported.

Officials in Shaya county issued a notice offering rewards ranging from 50 yuan (S$10) to more than 50,000 yuan for a wide array of information including tips on those growing beards, the Global Times said on Thursday.

Xinjiang has been hit by periodic deadly clashes between authorities and members of the mainly Muslim Uighur ethnic minority, among whom beards are a religious and cultural tradition.

China has blamed the violence on separatists with ties to foreign terrorist groups, while rights groups say authorities exaggerate the threat to justify religious and cultural restrictions on Uighurs.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!