Text messaging restored in Xinjiang

Officials lift some communications curbs more than six months after ethnic clashes.

    The government in Xinjiang has nearly doubled funding for security in the region in 2010 [EPA]

    According to officials, the communications blackout put in place after the riots had proven "effective" in helping to maintain regional stability.

    Limited usage

    The China Daily reported that mobile users can send texts within China but not to international numbers.

    Users are also limited to 20 text messages a day, and cannot transfer unused messages to subsequent days, the newspaper said.

    Violence erupted in Urumqi on July 5, pitting mainly Muslim Uighurs against residents from China's majority Han population.

    Nearly 200 people were killed in what was the worst ethnic violence in the country in decades.

    Eligen Imibakhi, chairman of the legislature's standing committee, said that controls on communications were necessary to prevent what Beijing has branded the "three evils" of "terrorism, separatism and extremism".

    The Xinjiang government  has nearly doubled funding for public security in the region for 2010 to $423 million as compared with last year, state media reported last week.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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