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Friday, July 10, 2009

Uighurs Gather At Mosques Despite Injunctions

Several mosques in the riot-hit Chinese city of Urumqi have opened for Friday prayers, countering earlier notices that all places of worship would be closed following clashes that left more than 150 people dead.

Mosques across the city, capital of China's far western Xinjiang region, had been ordered to close amid fears that large gatherings of ethnic Uighur Muslims could spark renewed unrest and clashes with the city's ethnic Han Chinese community.

Authorities had said the closures were for the sake of public safety and told Uighurs to pray at home.

However by midday on Friday large crowds had gathered at major mosques in the city.

link: Al Jazeera English - Asia-Pacific - Uighurs defy Urumqi mosque closure


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