Skip to main content

China executes Tiananmen Square attack 'masterminds'

By Katie Hunt, CNN
updated 9:21 PM EDT, Sun August 24, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • China executes 8 people convicted of terrorism
  • Three were executed for their roles in an attack on Tiananmen Square in October
  • China has cracked down on violence in Xinjiang involving Uyghurs

Hong Kong (CNN) -- China has executed eight people convicted of terrorism, including three for their roles in an attack in Beijing's Tiananmen Square in October, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported, citing local authorities.

Authorities in Xinjiang, an ethnically divided province in China's far west, said that three of those executed "masterminded" a terrorist attack on October 28 when a vehicle drove through security barriers and into a crowd on the square in the capital.

It crashed into a pedestrian bridge and burst into flames, killing five, including three in the vehicle, and wounded 40 others.

The other five had been found guilty of crimes including murder of government officials, setting up a terrorist organization and the illegal manufacturing of explosives, Xinhua said.

Xinjiang attacks shifting to civilians
Tensions in western China

China has cracked down on violence in Xinjiang involving Uyghurs, a Turkic-speaking, predominantly Muslim ethnic group after a series of high profile attacks in the past year.

Religious extremists

Twenty-nine people were killed and 130 injured when men armed with long knives stormed a train station in Kunming, southwest China in March.

The following month, an attack on a train station in Urumqi, the regional capital, left three dead, including the attackers, and an attack on an Urumqi market in May killed at least 39.

China has blamed religious extremists for violence in the region.

Some Uyghurs have expressed resentment toward China's Han majority in recent years over what they say is harsh treatment from Chinese security forces and Han people taking the lion's share of economic opportunities in Xinjiang.

Uyghurs also say their religious and cultural freedom has been curtailed.

Earlier this month, a town in Xinjiang temporarily banned people from wearing Islamic-style clothing and large beards on buses.

READ: China bans beards, veils on buses

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 7:06 AM EST, Mon November 24, 2014
China is building an island in the South China Sea that could accommodate an airstrip, according to IHS Jane's Defence Weekly.
updated 5:57 AM EST, Wed November 19, 2014
North Korean refugees face a daunting journey to reach asylum in South Korea, with gangs of smugglers the only option.
updated 6:19 PM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
China and "probably one or two other" countries have the capacity to shut down the nation's power grid and other critical infrastructure.
updated 5:39 AM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
It'd be hard to find another country that has spent as much, and as furiously, as China on giving its next generation a head start.
updated 12:32 AM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
In 1985, Meng Weina set up China's first private special needs school in the southern city of Guangzhou.
updated 3:14 PM EST, Wed November 12, 2014
Despite China's inexorable economic rise, the U.S. is still an indispensable ally, especially in Asia. No one knows this more than the Asian giant's leaders, writes Kerry Brown.
updated 10:38 PM EST, Wed November 12, 2014
For the United States and China to announce a plan reducing carbon emissions by almost a third by the year 2030 is a watershed moment for climate politics on so many fronts.
updated 3:26 PM EST, Mon November 17, 2014
China shows off its new stealth fighter jet, but did it steal the design from an American company? Brian Todd reports.
updated 8:01 PM EST, Mon November 10, 2014
Airshow China in Zhuhai provides a rare glimpse of China's military and commercial aviation hardware.
updated 8:14 AM EST, Wed November 12, 2014
A new exchange initiative aims to bridge relations between the two countries .
updated 12:51 AM EST, Tue November 11, 2014
Xi and Abe's brief summit featured all the enthusiasm of two unhappy schoolboys forced to make up after a schoolyard dust-up.
updated 8:12 PM EST, Mon November 10, 2014
Maybe you've decided to show your partner love with a new iPhone. But how about 99 of them?
updated 9:19 PM EST, Sun November 2, 2014
Can China's Muslim minority fit in? One school is at the heart of an ambitious experiment to assimilate China's Uyghurs.
updated 9:55 AM EST, Tue November 4, 2014
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is one of thousands of Americans learning Chinese.
updated 12:00 AM EST, Tue November 4, 2014
Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou says he needs to maintain good economic ties with China while trying to keep Beijing's push for reunification at bay.
updated 1:28 AM EDT, Thu October 30, 2014
Chinese drone-maker DJI wants to make aerial photography drones mainstream despite concerns about privacy.
updated 1:18 AM EDT, Wed October 29, 2014
A top retired general confesses to taking bribes, becoming the highest-profile figure in China's military to be caught up in war on corruption.
ADVERTISEMENT