China sentences 55 in mass trial at Xinjiang stadium

BEIJING: Authorities in China’s mainly Muslim Xinjiang mounted a mass sentencing in a stadium for 55 people on offences including terrorism, state media said today, as they press a crackdown on escalating violence. Photos showed armed officers guarding the premises, and the accused crammed into backs of lorries wearing orange vests and bent forward to face the ground as helmeted security forces stood over them.

The event was intended to demonstrate authorities’ “resolute determination crack down on the ‘three forces’ of violent terrorism”, Ili’s deputy party chief was cited as saying, referring to separatism, extremism and terrorism.

“The guilty will not escape,” he was cited as saying. “The only way out is to stop doing evil, turn yourself in and confess your crimes.”