Officials sacked over China mosque stampede

Stampede which killed 14 and injured ten others at the Beida mosque on Sunday blamed on poor crowd control.

Four of the ten injured were reported to be in critical condition [reuters]

A county chief and three other officials have been dismissed over a stampede at a mosque in China’s northwest that left 14 people dead. 

Those sacked included Xiji county head Ren Lixin, along with the county’s director of religious affairs, deputy police chief, and a township head, Xinhua News Agency said on Thursday.

The mosque’s administrator has already been detained on suspicion of criminal negligence.

The stampede, which also left ten injured happened in the Ningxia Hui autonomous region on Sunday, was blamed on poor crowd control.

It occurred at around 1pm while traditional food was being handed out to people attending an event to commemorate a late religious leader. 

Ningxia region is home to the Chinese-speaking Hui minority, who are mostly Muslim but distinct from the Uighurs of Xinjiang.

China’s 1.6 million Hui Muslims are largely indistinguishable from the country’s Han majority, making them distinct from the Turkic Muslim Uighur ethnic group who inhabit the Xinjiang region further north. 

While China’s officially atheistic ruling Communist Party has placed multiple restrictions on Uighur religious and cultural life, it has largely left the Hui to themselves.

Source: News Agencies