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Olympic terror plot foiled, China says

In a separate incident, an apparent attempt to crash a jet is quashed.

Associated Press
Published March 10, 2008


BEIJING - Police broke up a terror plot targeting the Beijing Olympics, and a flight crew foiled an apparent attempt to crash a Chinese jetliner in a separate case, officials said Sunday.

Wang Lequan, the top Communist Party official in the western region of Xinjiang, said materials seized in a January raid in the regional capital, Urumqi, had described a plot with a purpose "specifically to sabotage the staging of the Beijing Olympics."

He cited no other evidence, and past reports on the raid made no mention of Olympic targets.

Police found guns, homemade bombs, training materials and "extremist religious ideological materials" during the Jan. 27 raid, in which two members of the gang were killed and 15 arrested, according to earlier reports.

Wang said the group had been trained by and was following the orders of a Uighur separatist group based in Pakistan and Afghanistan called the East Turkestan Islamic Movement.

Xinjiang's governor said a flight crew prevented an apparent attempt to crash a China Southern flight from Urumqi on Friday. Nur Bekri did not label the incident a terrorist act, saying it remained under investigation. No passengers were injured, he said.

Both officials spoke at a meeting of the National People's Congress in Beijing.

[Last modified March 10, 2008, 00:22:15]

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